Mario Batali is due to be arraigned in Boston Municipal Court on indecent assault and battery charges related to a March 2017 incident. The charges stem from a series of allegations from a woman who said the famed chef kissed and groped her without consent, according to The Boston Globe.
Batali will appear in Boston Municipal Court on Friday, the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office confirmed to PEOPLE. The incident from which the charges stem allegedly occurred in a restaurant located in the Back Bay area of Boston, Massachusetts.
In a criminal complaint, also obtained by The Boston Globe, the woman claimed she saw Batali at Towne Stove and Spirits in Boston. She alleged that she tried to take a photo of him, and when he noticed her and called her over. The woman believed he was going to shout at her or ask her to delete it. Instead, court records show, he allegedly put his arm around her, groped her chest, touched her groin area, and then kissed her — all without her consent.
Per The Boston Globe's reporting, the woman alleged that Batali appeared intoxicated at the time. She said she could tell "by the smell and half-closed eyes." She also claimed he kept "pulling on her face" and invited her back to his hotel. The woman declined, and left with a friend.
In a statement issued to PEOPLE, Batali's attorney, Anthony Fuller, denied all allegations against his client. He told the magazine the 58-year-old chef intended to fight the charges.
"Mr. Batali denies the allegations in both this criminal complaint and the civil complaint filed last August," the attorney said. "The charges, brought by the same individual without any basis, are without merit. He intends to fight the allegations vigorously and we expect the outcome to fully vindicate Mr. Batali."
The woman made allegations similar to those previously mentioned in an August 2018 lawsuit.
"Without asking her permission or giving her any warning, and without having received any indication that she had any sexual interest in him whatsoever, which she did not, Batali sexually assaulted her," the alleged victim's lawyers wrote in a civil complaint, shared by The Boston Globe.0comments
If convicted, Batali faces 2 1/2 years in jail, and would be required to register as a sex offender, The Boston Globe said.
Batali was accused of sexual assault in December 2017, Eater reported. Several different women alleged that he groped them on different occasions in incidents that involved "inappropriate touching in a pattern of behavior that spans at least two decades." One of his accusers alleged that Batali drugged and sexually assaulted her while she was unconscious in 2005, according to a 60 Minutes interview.