Arnold Schwarzenegger was pictured attending an Oktoberfest event in Munich, Germany on Thursday, after British TV presenter Anna Richardson claimed she was blackballed in her industry for two years after claiming the actor had groping her and sued him for libel.
The Terminator star, 76, was seen in the Marstall Tent, which is described by the festival as ‘the youngest of the large Oktoberfest tents’ which is ‘lovingly decorated’ with ‘good food and friendly service.’
The Austria-born star was clad in an Oktoberfest ensemble of a brown coat over a black shirt with Bavarian Herren Lederhosen as he entered the facility alongside girlfriend Heather Milligan, 48.
Milligan, a physical therapist, donned a magenta dirndl dress over a long-sleeved white top. She had her blonde locks down and parted as she beamed while attending the event, an annual tradition for the True Lies star.
The outing came less than a day after Richardson, 52, said that she was out of work for two years after she accused Schwarzenegger of groping her, and subsequently sued him for libel.
The latest: Arnold Schwarzenegger, 76, was pictured at an Oktoberfest event in Munich, Germany on Thursday, after presenter Anna Richardson, 52, claimed she was blackballed in her industry for two years after claiming the actor had groped her and sued him for libel
Richardson said that Schwarzenegger touched her breast when she interviewed him on ITV series Big Screen in 2000 while he was promoting his new film, The Sixth Day.
Richardson initially made the claims in an October 2, 2003 report from the Los Angeles Times that quoted six women as saying the film star had past groped them when Schwarzenegger was running for governor of California.
She told the paper that in previous encounters the actor had been ‘a perfect gentleman’ but said the interview at The Dorchester hotel in London ‘was quite different.
‘He kept looking at my breasts, kept asking if I worked out,’ Richardson said. ‘I went to shake his hand and he grabbed me onto his knee and he said, “Before you go, I want to know if your breasts are real.”‘
Richardson, who was 29 at the time, said she looked around the room for help, but no one came to her assistance.
She continued: ‘At that point, he circled my left nipple with his finger and he said, “Yes they are real.”‘
Schwarzenegger’s campaign team refuted the allegations at the time, claiming it was Richardson who provocatively approached the star, cupping her right breast and saying, “What do you think of these?”‘
Entrance: The Austria-born star was clad in an Oktoberfest ensemble as he entered the facility alongside girlfriend Heather Milligan, 48
Star: The action film staple was the center of attention as he attended this year’s event in Munich
Upbeat: Schwarzenegger appeared to be in good spirts as he attended the event with Milligan
Confession: Anna Richardson has revealed that she was out of work for two years after she accused Arnold Schwarzenegger of groping her and sued him for libel
Accusation: The Naked Attraction presenter alleged that Arnold Schwarzenegger touched her breast when she interviewed him in 2000 while he was promoting his new film
In response to accusations from several women who alleged to have been groped by the Hollywood star, he apologized for having ‘behaved badly sometimes’ and doing some things that ‘were not right, which I thought were playful.’
Schwarzenegger said he would address specifics of the allegations after the election but later dismissed the claims as ‘old news’ and announced he would not appoint an investigator to look into the women’s claims.
Following the publication of the LA Times article, Richardson sued Schwarzenegger and his top aides, Sean Walsh and publicist Sheryl Main for libel, claiming that their denials implied that she had ‘deliberately and dishonestly fabricated’ the allegations.
The libel lawsuit was settled out of court, with lawyers for Schwarzenegger and Richardson stating: ‘The parties are content to put this matter behind them and are pleased that this legal dispute has now been settled.’
Schwarzenegger prevailed in the October 2003 election to replace then-Democratic Governor Gray Davis, as well as alternate Democratic candidate Cruz Bustamante. He held office as California’s 38th governor from 2003 to 2011.
Richardson reflected on the incident when she appeared on Simply Be’s Shaping Success YouTube series.
Asked by host Fleur East to recall a positive moment that had ‘shaped her’ in life, Richardson confessed: ‘This comes with a negative moment, it’s a yin-yang thing.
‘I had to interview Arnold Schwarzenegger in a sort of junket situation which is when you’re kind of in a sausage factory line of journalists. You go to a hotel, the star’s sitting there, you do a four-minute interview with them about their film and then you leave again.
During the incident: Richardson, who was 29 at the time, said she looked around the room for help, but no one came to her assistance (pictured in 2000)
Allegations: Richardson made the claims in a 2003 interview when Schwarzenegger was running for governor of California (pictured at a campaign rally)
Controversy: Schwarzenegger faced a stream of groping allegations during his 2003 gubernatorial campaign in California. Pictured in August of 2003 in Fresno, California
‘And during this particular interview with Arnie – and I have to choose my words very carefully here – but there was an incident. Or there was an alleged incident between us and subsequently I took legal action and sued Schwarzenegger and his team for libel.
‘So I have to be very careful about what I say but I sued him and we settled out of court. Now this is a great big story that’s kind of wrapped up in about 10 seconds of explanation but that moment defined me afterwards.’
Revealing the impact it had on her career, Richardson confessed she was out of work for two years and ended up in debt.
She continued: ‘I spent a long time out of work which was really difficult.
‘So I went from presenting a show and working in television to signing on and people in my local job center going, “Are you that girl that does that show?”.. and I’m like “Yeah I’m that girl, can I just get my housing benefit?”
‘So it was very difficult times but that taught me real resilience and to be unafraid to stand up to what I considered to be an injustice.’
Richardson also spoke about the significance of speaking out prior to the 2017 #MeToo movement.
She explained: ‘I think that women have been carrying this message for decades and it’s been falling on deaf ears; but certainly in terms of my situation and what allegedly happened, I took legal action, and this was well ahead of the #MeToo movement.’
Speaking out: Richardson told host Fleur East of the aftermath ‘it was very difficult but that taught me real resilience and to be unafraid to stand up to what I considered to be an injustice’
Richardson continued: ‘So when the whole #MeToo thing happened I felt really frustrated about that. I thought, seriously? Are we seriously here again 15 years later talking about this? It’s still going on but I was there 15 years prior.
‘I think there’s something about women and people, speaking truth to power and saying this isn’t ok actually.’
Asked how she found the courage to speak out, Richardson revealed: ‘It was a strange knowing that I have to do this.
‘This thing that has happened is not right and it’s about speaking truth to power and saying “I don’t care who you are. I don’t care what threats you come out with”.
‘This is about standing up and saying, this is wrong, this is unacceptable and I need to put this right.’
Richardson went on to note: ‘There’s something in this country, in this culture and as women, we’re very afraid to say I’m not happy about this or we need to talk about this.
‘Particularly with wanting to confront, we’re told as women that you’re not allowed to confront, you should be quiet.
‘Whereas if you’re a guy, it’s acceptable to do that. I’ve raged against that being forced into a box as a woman, that is something that will get to me. I almost can’t help myself to speak out about something that’s an injustice or not right.’
Richardson was able to re-enter the television industry working behind the scenes as a producer and later resumed presenting. She has hosted a series of shows of Channel 4, including Supersize vs Superskinny, The Sex Education Show and Secret Eaters.
Richardson is the current host of Naked Attraction and Changing Rooms.