In response to a defamation suit brought by his accusers, Cosby sues Green, Serignese, Traitz, Louisa Moritz, Bowman, Tarshis and Leslie for defamation, saying:
[The defendants] have made malicious, opportunistic and false and defamatory accusations of sexual misconduct against him. [They have] knowingly published false statements and accusations.
Federal Judge Mastroianni says a defamation lawsuit brought against Cosby by three women who say he sexually abused them decades ago can move forward. Cosby’s lawyers had asked the judge to dismiss their suit, arguing that the remarks were personal opinions protected by the First Amendment and legal declarations made in his defense. Green, Serignese and Traitz have accused Cosby of drugging them and then having unwanted sexual contact with them. The defamatory comments range from statements dismissing their accusations as “ridiculous claims” and “absurd fabrication” to longer remarks that sought to discredit the accuser. Mastroianni:
The court recognizes that some jurisdictions do apply a version of the conditional self-defense privilege, which allows individuals, in certain circumstances, to publish defamatory responsive statements necessary to defend their reputation. However … such a privilege does not permit a defendant to knowingly publish false states.
Attorney for women:
We’d expect and hope the judge rejected every one of Mr. Cosby’s attempts to throw the case out of court and allowed the case to proceed.
A bronze bust of Cosby that has been in the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame Plaza at Hollywood Studios since 1994 is removed. Traitz started a Change.org petition seven months ago to have the statue removed from Disney. Her niece:
He has no place in Disney. It’s not a place for a predator. To see the bust of Bill Cosby as a hero on a pedestal in Disney after the family history, and we know of what had happened to my aunt all those years ago, it’s hurtful.
Serignese and Traitz join a defamation lawsuit against Cosby, alleging that comments by Cosby’s representatives publicly branding them as liars. Attorney Joseph Cammarata:
The lawsuit provides an opportunity for women who claim to have been harmed to have their day in court in a forum where the truth can be tried.