Bill Cosby serves supermodel Beverly Johnson with defamation lawsuit
Bill Cosby is fighting back against supermodel Beverly Johnson in his ongoing sexual assault drama.
Embattled comedian Bill Cosby has slapped former supermodel Beverly Johnson with a defamation lawsuit over her allegations of sexual assault.
The beauty is one of the most high-profile women to come forward with accusations against The Cosby Show star to date, after first describing her 1980s encounter with the funnyman for a Vanity Fair magazine article last December (14).
In the piece, she claimed the actor had tried to drug her by reportedly slipping something into her coffee during a visit to his California home, while she auditioned for a part in his hit sitcom. She also detailed the story in her autobiography, titled, The Face That Changed It All: A Memoir.
However, Cosby is now fighting back - on Monday (21Dec15), his lawyers filed a lawsuit in the Superior Court of California in Los Angeles, dismissing Johnson's account as "false, malicious, opportunistic, and defamatory".
In papers obtained by the New York Daily News, the lawsuit states, "Seeing an opportunity to thrust herself back into the spotlight and attempt to revive her flagging career as a model, actress, and public personality, in December 2014, Defendant joined the campaign to assassinate Mr. Cosby's reputation and character by willfully, maliciously, and falsely accusing Mr. Cosby of drugging her at his home in New York, and suggesting he did so in an effort to have sex with Defendant.
"Defendant's false allegations against Mr. Cosby have been the centerpiece of her attempted resurgence and she has played them to the hilt, repeatedly and maliciously publishing the false accusations in articles, interviews and television appearances. She has recently published a memoir, which makes the same false statements, and has used those false allegations as a basis to generate interest in, and promote sales of, her book."
Cosby is seeking both compensatory and punitive damages, as well as a public apology and the removal of the chapter in question from her autobiography from all unsold copies of the book.
The lawsuit comes a week after the veteran actor launched a countersuit against seven of the over 40 women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.
In a similar suit filed in the state of Massachusetts, Cosby blasted Tamara Green, Therese Serignese, Linda Traitz, Louisa Moritz, Barbara Bowman, Joan Tarshis and Angela Leslie for making "malicious, opportunistic and false and defamatory accusations of sexual misconduct against him".
Cosby claims the accusations have caused him "substantial injuries" and damage to his reputation and character, and he is also demanding unspecified damages in that case.
Since the statute of limitations has expired in almost all of the cases against him, the alleged victims cannot pursue criminal charges and Cosby, who maintains his innocence, has never been charged with any offence related to the multitude of sex assault claims.
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