The former contestant named Angelea Preston is suing Banks for $3 million, claiming that she was unfairly denied the top prize on the show because of her history as a female escort.
According to legal docs obtained by E! News, which were filed on Wednesday in the Los Angeles Superior Court, Preston is asking for at least $3 million in damages for "intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress." In addition to naming Banks, who is the executive producer of the show, the lawsuit also names The CW network.
Preston previously appeared on cycle 14 of the show in 2010 before returning as a contestant for cycle 17 for an "All-Star Season" made up of former contestants.
The lawsuit claims Preston won Season 17 of the show in 2011 and was entitled to a package that included a $100,000 contract with CoverGirl cosmetics and a spread in a high fashion magazine. However, Preston claims she was wrongly disqualified because she had worked as an escort.
She also claims she did not violate any of the competition's rules because her job as an escort took place before her appearance on the reality TV show.
The CW Network responded to the allegations in a statement to The Wrap, saying, "As noted during the broadcast of the America's Next Top Model finale in 2011, information about Angelea was learned after production wrapped on that cycle that led to her disqualification from the competition. We are confident that her lawsuit has no merit."
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