— The Lafayette Music Company, a subsidiary of the Lafayette-based Lafarge Co., is suing President-elect Donald Trump, his son Eric Trump, former President George H.W. Bush, his former chief strategist Steve Bannon and others, alleging the Trump administration is “deliberately harming” the Lafayette company and its employees.
The lawsuit filed Wednesday in federal court in New Orleans is one of the first major lawsuits to be filed by a private company against a sitting president.
The Lafayette lawsuit follows similar lawsuits filed by several other companies against Trump’s business interests in the past two weeks.
The Lafayette company is also suing the Trump family for alleged misuse of its trademark, trademarks and copyrights.
The Trump family has denied any wrongdoing.
The case was filed by the Lafayette music company and four former employees, including former CEO Joe Laskowski, the company said in a statement.
The Trump administration has made a concerted effort to silence its critics, the lawsuit alleges.
The company said that since the 2016 election, the Trump transition team has threatened its employees, threatened to “immediately cease business relations with” the company, threatened litigation against its employees and even threatened to withhold the sale of its company stock.
Lafayette said the lawsuit filed in federal district court in Louisiana follows “a series of legal actions and intimidation tactics” against the Lafayette business, which it said has lost nearly $20 million in sales in recent years.
Labourts business is now “failing under a cloud of fear and uncertainty,” said the company in a joint statement.
Laskowski said he is confident that the lawsuit is a “vicious attack” and that the company is ready to “rescue the business of our company.”
Laskowski also said that “while we will vigorously defend our trademarks and copyright, we will also be willing to pay legal fees in the amount of $2 million to $5 million” to defend its trademark.
The company said the legal threats against the company were part of a pattern of harassment, intimidation and “intimidation and coercion” by the Trump government.
Lascha M. Nitzsch, the director of legal affairs at the New York-based public interest law firm Public Citizen, said the lawsuits could have significant consequences for the Trump Administration.
“I am not sure if the Trump White House is going to be a better administration than the one we had under President Obama,” Nitzsche said.
“This is a huge threat to the presidency and the future of the country.”
The Lafayette lawsuit, which is a separate lawsuit filed by another company, the New Orleans-based New Orleans Chamber of Commerce, is unrelated to the Lafayette litigation, which was filed Monday in federal courts in New York and Illinois.
It says Lafayette is “in danger of being sold to the highest bidder.”
The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The New Orleans lawsuit seeks to bar the sale and use of the “Lafarge” name, trademark and image on products sold in the U.S. and in foreign countries and to bar any unauthorized use of its trademarks.
Lacrosse is a sport popular in Louisiana.
The team was founded in 1889 and won two Louisiana championships in the 1930s and 1940s.
The U.K.-based company says it was a pioneer in providing a safe, healthy environment for lacrosse players to compete and that it “continues to do so to this day.”