Essendon have denied claims they sought help from Melbourne underworld figure Mick Gatto relating to the club’s doping scandal, Fairfax Media reports.
Former employee and dual premiership player Dean Wallis claims the Bombers asked Gatto to obtain information on the doping controversy which forms part of a Worksafe action against the club.
Former team services manager John Elliott has joined Wallis in the claim.
The action also claims the club covered up fraud, cocaine use and sexual harassment and removed emails.
The meeting with Gatto was allegedly set up to gather information from Shane Charter who was linked to Stephen Dank.
Charter pulled out of giving evidence an anti-doping tribunal at the last minute.
Wallis said he was the “scapegoat” in the aftermath of the supplements saga.
"I have been scapegoated in relation to the supplement program, while others at the club have been covering up the use of cocaine, sexual harassment and fraudulent behaviour," Wallis said in a statement.
Elliott said he was instructed to contact Gatto and arrange a meeting.
"In November 2014 I was asked ... to set up a meeting off-site with Mick Gatto, who was an external well-known dispute resolution specialist," he said.
"The purpose of the meeting was in regard to obtaining information from Shane Charter, who was a supplier to Stephen Dank."
Essendon boss Lindsay Tanner has denied the claims.
"Two disgruntled ex-employees have made a number of false and unsubstantiated allegations against the club," Tanner said in a statement on Thursday morning.
"For example, allegations of having dealings with Mick Gatto are false.
"Inappropriate demands and threats made upon Essendon Football Club have been reported to the AFL Integrity Department and on its advice, Victoria Police have been contacted," Tanner said.
"The workers compensation claims made by both former employees have been rejected by Work Cover.
"In the interest of our members, players, staff and broader AFL community, the club is focused on the future and the upcoming 2017 season."