Actor Rob Lowe has accused a former employee of trying to blackmail him out of $1.5 million (GBP750,000).
The West Wing star claims the unnamed woman has demanded he and his wife Sheryl pay the money by the end of this week (11Apr08), or she'll go public with allegations of harassment.
Writing on blog website The Huffington Post, Lowe says the woman has worked for his family "off and on for seven years" and that she abruptly quit several weeks ago.
Lowe adds that he has since been told by one of her colleagues she had a "crush" on him and wished he would get a divorce from his spouse of 17 years.
The 44-year-old actor writes: "A former employee is demanding my wife Sheryl and I pay her $1.5 million by the end of the week or she will accuse us both of a vicious laundry list of false terribles.
"It is an attempt to damage and humiliate not only my wife and me, but our two young sons as well.
"My family is devastated at this betrayal; this woman worked in our home and traveled with us off and on for seven years, without complaint. In fact, she left other jobs to return to work for us three different times."
Lowe also reproduces two text messages he claims the woman sent to his wife shortly after she left her job; he argues both show she was perfectly content during her time working for his family.
He writes: "(There's) nothing about abuse in the workplace or inappropriate conduct; nothing about discrepancies with monies owed, no explanation as to why she would return numerous times to a job she considered so abusive. Just a correct assessment of her relationship with our family.
"But clearly, if you are going to demand a million-five for supposed 'anguish' suffered in our home, you'd better change your tune fast; so she did...
"Everyone knows we live in a time where public figures are targets. But I also know of many people in everyday life who are paying the price of a climate where anyone can accuse anybody of anything, anytime, and hope for a big cash pay-off at the end. 'Hush money' to just go away. Well I won't go away. No one intimidates my family."