Kathleen McLaughlin, the ex-wife of the former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle, sued Subway and alleged on Monday that the sandwich chain knew about his interest in minors as early as 2004 but didn’t do anything to stop it.
McLaughlin, who divorced Fogle after he pleaded guilty to federal charges of child pornography and having sex with minors last year, alleges in a suit obtained by PEOPLE that she and her children suffered emotional distress because Fogle’s behavior wasn’t publicly known before she married him in 2010.
Subway released a statement to PEOPLE on Monday, writing, “As this is pending legal action, we cannot provide comment.”
PEOPLE reached out to Fogle’s attorney, Ron Elberger, on his ex-wife’s new allegations about his behavior but did not receive a response.
At a news conference on Monday, McLaughlin said the company received at least three reports indicating Fogle’s sexual involvement with children but failed to notify the police, according to the lawsuit.
McLaughlin has two children with Fogle, a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old. She said she wants answers to questions her children will perhaps ask in the future, such as what Subway knew and when, if they conducted any investigations and if they ever notified the authorities.
McLaughlin said she was unaware of Fogle’s sexually deviant behavior until a 2015 raid by authorities ended in his imprisonment.
“Finding out your husband and the father of your children is a child predator and knowing that his job involved visiting schools on a regular basis is devastating,” McLaughlin said.
Mike Antrim, her attorney, said he’ll recommend what damages she should request only after learning about what Subway knew at the time.
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McLaughlin said Subway marketed Fogle as a “family man” even after it knew about the allegations against him and “used my children and my likeness in that campaign. I did not give them consent to do so.”
The lawsuit alleges that Subway knew that Fogle had approached a young girl for a sex act at an event for Subway in Las Vegas as early as 2004. It contends that Subway sent a senior public relations manager to talk to him about the allegations but never spoke to the young girl.
The suit also details an alleged moment when Subway franchisee Cindy Mills called the company’s then-CEO, Jeff Moody, in 2008 to discuss Fogle.
Mills said Fogle had told her that “he really liked them young,” and that he had admitted that he had slept with minors from ages 9 to 16, according to the suit. Mills told Moody that Fogle had suggested Mills should “prostitute herself.”
“Please don’t tell me anymore,” Moody interrupted Mills at the time, the suit claims. “Don’t worry he has met someone. She is a teacher and he seems to love her very much, and we think she will keep him grounded.”
The teacher in question was McLaughlin, according to the lawsuit.
Fogle is serving more than 15 years in federal prison. He has agreed to pay 14 of his victims $100,000 each.
• Reporting by ADAM CARLSON