Plateau-Mont-Royal mayoral candidate drops out amid sexual harassment allegations

Seven of Brûlé's former employees spoke out in a Journal de Montreal article published Friday, claiming to have been victims of exhibitionism and unwanted sexual advances from Brûlé.

Michel Brûlé accused of exhibitionism and unwanted sexual advances by former employees

Michel Brûlé was running for the Plateau Sans Frontières party. (Kim McNairn/CBC)

Plateau-Mont-Royal mayoral candidate Michel Brûlé has announced he's pulling out of the race following sexual harassment allegations from seven of his former employees at his publishing company.

Brûlé has denied the allegations, which appeared in the Journal de Montreal. Several women accused Brûlé of unwanted sexual advances — he called the situation "a conspiracy."

"Despite everything, I will fight to re-establish the facts and I'm convinced I will soon be bleached of all suspicion," Brûlé said in Facebook post.

Brûlé was running for the Plateau Sans Frontières party.

Another candidate drops out of race

One of the candidates running alongside Brûlé has also ended her campaign.

"The allegations against him have made continuing this race impossible," said Caroline Moreno, who was running for borough councillor of the De Lorimier district under Brûlé's Plateau sans frontières party.

Moreno said she never had a problem with Brûlé, and that he always treated her with the utmost respect.

Caroline Moreno ended her campaign after Michel Brûlé was accused of sexual harassment by several former employees. (Radio-Canada)

She pulled out of the race because the atmosphere had become toxic, she said.

While Moreno said she has experienced sexual assault and harassment in the past and condemns such actions, she said the presumption of innocence should apply to all.

This week, Moreno used the hashtag #MoiAussi on Twitter to denounce sexual assault and harassment. 

With files from Radio-Canada and Lauren McCallum