Cosby’s latest lawsuit, filed in US District Court in Pennsylvania, accuses Constand, mother Gianna and The National Enquirer of breach of contract, according to court papers.
The lawsuit was filed last July, but only became public yesterday (Feb. 17) after it was unsealed, according to buzzfeed.
IM reported in December that Cosby had filed suits against several of more than 50 accusers, charging them with defamation.
While he is within his legal rights to seek redress in the courts, the strategy amounts to little more than legal intimidation. It allows him to use his money, power and fame to grind down his accusers with burdensome court costs.
By the same token, he has little to gain from the litigation other than public relations.
Constand’s case is significant because she is the only accuser who took legal action against Cosby at around the time her incident took place. After the police refused to press charges, she sued him in civil court.
At the time, Constand was director of operations for the women’s basketball team at Temple University. Cosby attended the school and became a major donor. He invited her to his Philadelphia home where the assault took place.
Montgomery County (Pa) prosecutor Kevin Steele reopened the criminal investigation last year and charged Cosby with one count of aggravated indecent assault, a felony with a maximum penalty of 10 years in jail.
The filing just beat the 12-year statute of limitations on the crime.
The criminal charges are based largely on Cosby’s sworn deposition in the Constand lawsuit. It was the only known time the comedian was questioned under oath. He admitted obtaining drugs to give to women before having sex with them.
As part of the 2006 settlement, Constand agreed to a gag order barring her from discussing the case. Many of the files were sealed. But a judge granted an order last year releasing certain documents, including Cosby’s testimony.
In one of the latest developments, Constand’s lawyer, Dolores Troiani, testified before a judge at a Feb. 2 hearing into the criminal case. She also mentioned she had been sued, according to local reports.
Cosby asked for the hearing to prove a former district attorney promised him he would not be charged with a crime over the incident and to seek dismissal of the charges. But the judge rejected his motion.
The comedian will next appear in court in the felony case on March 8.
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