Court

More sexual harassment charges against Pervez Agwan’s congressional campaign are likely, attorney for accuser says

Melissa Moore, attorney for former Agwan staffer Maha Chishtey, said her firm is representing other former Agwan campaign employees who will be filing charges related to alleged sexual harassment by former senior staffers.

Pervez Agwan
Agwan for Congress campaign
U.S. Congressional candidate Pervez Agwan has been accused of sexual harassment by a former staffer

Democratic congressional candidate Pervez Agwan campaign may soon be facing additional sexual harassment charges. The attorney for Agwan's accuser is representing other former campaign employees who allege inappropriate behavior by senior staffers.

In her court filing, alleging sexual harassment by Agwan himself, Maha Chishtey also pointed to inappropriate behavior by a former senior staff member, then-Organizing Director Angelo Perlera. Melissa Moore, Chishtey's attorney, says female staff had complained several times about Perlera and other individuals.

"From our perspective, and the individuals we've spoken with, the campaign was littered with problems, including other male individuals within the organization that were making unwanted and inappropriate advances at other female employees," Moore said. "My firm has been retained by some of those individuals and will be working through filing their complaints with the Texas Workforce Commission and EEOC, and if they are not resolved, then they will more than likely be filing suit as well."

Moore said that, due to the backlog in court cases stretching back to the COVID pandemic, none of the cases are likely to be resolved before voters cast their ballots between Agwan and Congresswoman Lizzie Fletcher in the March Democratic primary for Texas's 7th Congressional District.

Agwan released a statement to Houston Public Media denying the allegations. “Our campaign retained an independent party to do a thorough investigation of the allegations, and we look forward to those findings,” he said. “We are confident that there is no evidence to support allegations made in the lawsuit.”

Moore said she was not impressed by Agwan's statement.

"The fact that they may have hired an independent investigator, that's all well and fine," Moore said, "but ultimately that investigator is being paid by the person that is being accused as being a sexual harasser. In other words, the Agwan campaign is paying for the independent investigator."