A&E’s popular reality show “Storage Wars” is under fire, with the attack coming from one of its own cast members.
On Tuesday, “Storage Wars” star David Hester sued A&E and the producers, Original Productions, alleging that the show is staged and is a “fraud on the public.”
Hester claims he was fired from the show after he complained that producers routinely planted valuable items inside the storage lockers featured on the show for “dramatic effect,” according to court documents. He is seeking more than $3.75 million in damages and fees.
“When Plaintiff David Hester (“Hester”) complained to producers that A&E’s fraudulent conduct of salting and staging the storage lockers was possibly illegal, he was fired from the Series. As further evidence of Defendants’ outrageous conduct, they purported to rescind their written exercise of an option retaining Hester’s services this coming season,” says an excerpt from the 14-page complaint, according to Deadline.
“Nearly every aspect of the series is faked, even down to the plastic surgery that one of the female cast members underwent in order to create more “sex appeal” for the show, the cost of which was paid for by Original,” the suit alleges.
The blistering accusations also contend that producers have gone so far as to manipulate the outcomes of some auctions by paying for storage units “on behalf of the weaker cast members who lack the both the skill and financial wherewithal to place winning bids.”
“Storage Wars” is now in its third season on A&E, where it’s a ratings winner for the network and has spawned two spin-offs based in New York and Texas. The show auctions off abandoned storage lockers, with the buyers trying to outbid one another to win the units’ unknown contents in the hopes of finding hidden treasures.
Known to viewers as “The Mogul” with the
annoying trademark “yeeeeeeep” during the bidding wars, Hester has been one of the main buyers in the cast since it debuted in 2010.