Mandi Bierly
September 02, 2010 AT 10:00 AM EDT

A former employee at Sean “Diddy” Combs’ Bad Boy Entertainment has accused him of age discrimination in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in New York City. Francesca Spero, 51, claims she was fired after having hip surgery and admitting to a fellow executive that she was treated for a drug dependency relapse, the AP reports. According to the lawsuit, Spero takes credit for helping to launch Combs’ career by introducing him to Russell Simmons and Uptown Records. “There are many reasons why Ms. Spero is no longer employed by Bad Boy, but age discrimination is not one of them,” a publicist for Combs told the AP.

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