Sequoia Capital parted ways with longtime venture capital partner Goguen, 52, after a suit was filed in San Mateo County Superior Court last week on behalf of Amber Lauren Baptiste, Goguen's sexual partner for over a decade.
According to court documents obtained by The Guardian, "Goguen abused Baptiste sexually, physically and emotionally for over 13 years. When [Baptiste] could no longer tolerate his behavior, Mr. Goguen signed a contract to pay (Baptiste) $40 million as compensation for the horrors she suffered at his hands. After paying her $10 million, Mr. Goguen refused to honor the rest of his agreement."
In 2001, Goguen, a prominent Silicon Valley investor, met Baptiste, who claims to have been the victim of human trafficking since age 15. He allegedly "promised to help break her free of human traffickers."
Goguen fired back against Baptiste's allegations in his cross-complaint filed on Monday.
"Far from being a sexual slave, Ms. Baptiste told Mr. Goguen how much she missed him when they were apart and desired to see him again, with endearing phrases such as: '1 Million Kisses and Hugs Forever,'" Goguen argues.
We understand the allegations about Michael Goguen are unproven and unrelated to Sequoia. Still, we decided his departure was appropriate.— Sequoia Capital (@sequoia) March 12, 2016
Sequoia Capital released a statement via Twitter on Saturday writing, " We understand the allegations about Michael Goguen are unproven and unrelated to Sequoia. Still, we decided his departure was appropriate."
Goguen had worked with Sequoia Capital since 1996, during which the venture capital firm were early investors in Apple, Google, Airbnb, Paypal, Oracle and LinkedIn.
That same Saturday, Goguen issued a response on LinkedIn stating, "Unfortunately anyone can make horrific allegations about anyone else that they have an axe to grind with, especially after a long relationship ends badly. Being successful and high profile can make you a target for the worst kind of threats or reputation damage in such a situation."