Celebrity jeweler Lamar Berko said he and eight of his Black friends were turned away from 100 Wardour Street in Soho, West End last week.
One of the bar’s door attendants allegedly blocked them from entering because there were “too many men” in the group. However, Berko said he watched the attendant wave multiple white people through the door.
“In my field, I’m used to dealing with racism,” Berko said, per The Independent. “In this country, it’s always indirect and never direct. For example, I’ve been stopped by the police so many times for no reason other than the car I drive.”
The door attendant also alleged that the bar was too packed to let Berko’s group in despite it being nowhere near capacity, according to the jeweler. When Berko told the employee he felt racially profiled, the attendant allegedly said “I don’t judge by race, just by the person.”
Berko, who has reportedly worked with stars including David Beckham, Stefflon Don, Burna Boy, and Wizkid, said he felt forced to explain his profession to try to get into the bar. The jeweler said he even offered to purchase tables for over $10,000, but was still turned away.
“I want them to understand that what they’ve done is mad,” Berko said. “I am speaking out because they’re not going to make me feel like I’m crazy. The only difference between my friends and I, and everyone else who was let in was our ethnicity.”
100 Wardour Street hasn’t responded to the accusations.