WASHINGTON (FOX 5 DC) - A new Netflix documentary about Bikram Yoga founder Bikram Choudhury has a lot of people talking.
The documentary alleges that Choudhury is a serial rapist.
He is the namesake behind countless Bikram Yoga studios nationwide including across the Washington, DC area. The studios specialize in hot yoga and owners typically train with Choudhury after paying thousands of dollars to use his name and teachings.
FOX 5’s Tisha Lewis spike with Kendra Blackett-Zibinga, the owner of Bikram Yoga in Ivy City. She says she paid $10,000 to train under Choudhury for nine weeks back in 2011.
She defends him, describing the new Netflix documentary as, “rehashed stories and sensationalism.”
The documentary features several women explaining how the now 75-year-old Bikram Choudhury allegedly sexually assaulted them.
TMZ reports The L.A. District Attorney's Office *acknowledges* a case was submitted in 2013 involving 4 accusers -- but at the time "it was determined that there was insufficient evidence to file criminal charges.
In northeast, Bikram Yoga Ivy City’s owner and staff say they’ve separated the yoga from the allegations against Bikram Yoga’s founder.
Choudhury apparently fled the country after being the subject of a nearly $7 million dollar judgment from a former lawyer who also accused him of sexual harassment.
Despite donning the Bikram Yoga name, the studios are reportedly independently owned and Bikram Yoga Ivy City’s owner and staff here say they have no affiliation.
“What separated ourselves from him,” said Jessie Wedell, an instructor at Bikram Yoga Ivy City.
Prosecutors in Los Angeles, California say they are willing to open a new investigation against Bikram Choudhury if any new cases surface.
Most recently, Choudhury reportedly responded to the allegations denying raping anyone.
The Bikram Yoga style features 26 postures, and two breathing exercises in a room heated to 105-degrees.