City cuts $40k check to driver in cabbie sex video extortion case

City cuts $40k check to driver in cabbie sex video extortion case

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The City wrote a check for $40,000 to the cab driver who claimed he was arrested on false charges based on the word of a local radio show host he caught on camera trying to have sex with him in the front seat of his taxi.

The City of New Orleans settled a federal civil rights lawsuit with Hervey Farrell over his August 2013 arrest on voyeurism and extortion counts according to court records. A representative from the mayor's office confirmed that Farrell received $40,000 as a result.

Farrell and the City settled the lawsuit on May 21, 2014, over two years after the high-profile incident started. Jennifer Gaubert, then the host of WGSO's "Law Out Loud," got into Farrell's cab after a night of drinking to get a ride home. The video Farrell captured after their ride began shows Gaubert urging him to have sex with her. The video only shows part of the encounter, but captures Farrell repeatedly turning down Gaubert's advances until she leaves the cab.

Nearly a year later, Gaubert told NOPD that Farrell was threatening to release the video if she didn't pay him. According to Farrell's attorney, officers arrested Farrell solely on her statement.

Farrell remained in jail for a little over a day before bonding out. The Orleans Parish District Attorney's office would later refuse the charges against him.

Farrell then filed a lawsuit against the city claiming that he suffered emotional distress from the arrest and the media coverage surrounding it. The lawsuit claimed that he was the victim of false arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution and kidnapping. Mayor Mitch Landrieu, then NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas, three NOPD officers and Gaubert were all named as defendants.

As part of the deal, the City of New Orleans admitted no fault.

Copyright 2016 WVUE. All rights reserved.