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Bill Cosby is countersuing seven women who accused him of defamation, seeking damages "to the full extent of the law," according to the Associated Press. The once-revered comedian, accused of sexual misconduct by about 50 women nationally, argued in his filing that the seven women he is suing are "engaged in a campaign to assassinate" his reputation and character.
Cosby's counterclaim was made in federal court in Springfield, Massachusetts. In it, his lawyers recalled Cosby's work as an entertainer and philanthropist, writing that he "prides himself in the legacy and reputation he has earned throughout his life." He says the women suing him were motivated by money to besmirch his good name and denies rape allegations.
Proof Is in the Pudding?
Although the seven women named in the counterclaim are not alone in saying the entertainer engaged in sexual misconduct, his lawsuit argues that these women spoke out ahead of his return to television in 2014 to destroy him. NBC dropped plans for his new show after multiple women came forward with rape allegations.
Cosby also pointed out his accusers' greed. As an example, he said one woman who claimed he raped her in 1976 asked him for money after a car accident she had during the nineties.
But he may have failed to make the intended point. Why he paid for car accident injuries more than a decade after an alleged rape if nothing happened is not clear. It's not proof of guilt by any stretch, but it hardly indicates his innocence. Certainly, it shows he struck some strange deals with his accusers over the years.
The Lawyers Speak
In a statement, Cosby's lawyer, Monique Pressley, accused the women accusing her client of "multidecade-old, false, uncorroborated, opportunistic allegations of sexual assault." She said they have caused substantial injuries and damages to his reputation and business contracts.
Meanwhile, an attorney for the seven women facing Cosby's counterclaim said his move "stinks of retaliation." He dismissed the comedian's view of the case, saying, "To suggest that these ladies -- each and every one of them -- got together and orchestrated a campaign against Mr. Cosby is hard to fathom."