Robert De Niro explodes in workplace abuse court case testimony, saying it is 'nonsense'

Killers of the Flower Moon actor Robert De Niro has exploded on the witness stand during a civil trial in New York City over claims he harassed his former personal assistant Graham Chase Robinson.

De Niro had been questioned for five hours in the court, and People and Deadline reported the actor had raised his voice "repeatedly" while on the stand for the second day of the trial between his company Canal Productions and his ex-assistant.

He told the court he had "berated her" when she didn't wake him in time for a meeting.

He also agreed he may have called her "petulant", "snippy" and a "f***ing spoiled brat".

"I've raised my voice. I don't yell. You wanna dispute that? That's one thing I don't do," People reported him as saying when questioned by Robinson's attorney.

However, De Niro became emotional during the testimony, shouting: "Shame on you Chase Robinson" and demanding: "Give me a break with this stuff!" over claims Robinson made about an incident where she said she had been forced to scratch De Niro's back because it was itching.

He apologised for the outburst in court after stating under examination that: "This whole case is nonsense".

Canal Productions filed a US $6m lawsuit against Robinson in 2019, alleging she excessively binge-watched Netflix shows while working, charged personal meals and groceries to the company account and used "her employer's fund for her personal gain".

Robinson filed a counter-lawsuit alleging De Niro and Canal Productions had violated New York City Human Rights Law, had directed sexist comments at her, and paid her less than a male employee.

Robinson quit working for the Goodfellas actor in 2019 after an 11-year business relationship.

The trial is continuing.