Lawyers for The OC actress Mischa Barton have issued a warning that they will take legal action against anyone who attempts to sell naked footage of the actress.
“It has been reported that naked or sexually explicit images of Ms. Barton are being ‘shopped around’,” said Lisa Bloom, Barton’s lawyer, in a statement released via Twitter on Tuesday.
“Ms Barton does not consent to any disclosure of any such images. She believes that she was recorded without her consent by someone she was seeing at the time.”
On Monday the Daily Mail reported that a video of the 31-year-old was being offered to the highest bidder, with a starting price of $500,000 (£411,000).
BREAKING NEWS: I am proud to represent actress Mischa Barton, who is the victim of revenge pornography. Here is my statement. pic.twitter.com/87brpAJoqy— Lisa Bloom (@LisaBloom) March 14, 2017
“There’s a name for this disgusting conduct: revenge pornography,” said Ms Bloom. “Revenge pornography is a form of sexual assault, and it is also a crime and a civil wrong in California. And we will not stand for it.”
Ms Bloom also warned that she and her client would go after anyone who “attempts to traffic” the photos or videos.
“I am very proud to represent actress Mischa Barton, who is courageously standing up for her rights,” she wrote, ending the letter with a final word of warning: “You proceed at your peril.”
The London-born actress has struggled to repeat the success she had with the teen drama, in which she starred from 2003-2007.
She was arrested for drunk driving in 2007, then two years later - following an intervention by her parents - she had a nervous breakdown and was held in psychiatric care after threatening to kill herself.
In 2009 her house was reclaimed by the bank after it was revealed she had failed to pay her mortgage for five months.
She was then sued by her landlord over unpaid rent on her $7,000-a-month New York apartment before, in April 2015 she begun legal action against her “scheming” mother for stealing from her, with her lawyer describing her as “a greedy stage mother”.
The legal action was dropped a year later.
But 2017 has not been any easier.
In January she was taken to hospital after officers responded to a disturbance call at her LA home, and she was seen on camera hanging over a fence and ranting about her mother being a “witch”. Barton was released the following day and told People magazine that someone slipped her a date-rape drug as she celebrated her birthday with friends.
She thanked her fans for their well-wishes via Twitter on January 31.
“Thank you so much for all the love guys. It means the world to me. There is too much going on in the world so I appreciate this more than ever,” she wrote.
“From the bottom of my heart. We shall overcome.”