Model Beverly Johnson has become the eighth woman to be sued by comedian Bill Cosby this month,BBC reports. Johnson is one of more than 50 women who have accused the 78-year-old of drugging and, in some cases, sexually assaulting them.
Earlier this month, Cosby took legal action against seven other women, saying several of them lied about him for financial gain. He has always denied the accusations and has never been criminally charged.
Cosby’s latest legal action claims that Johnson defamed him and intentionally inflicted emotional distress. “Mr Cosby states that he never drugged the defendant and her story is a lie,” said his representative Monique Pressley.
The comedian wants a jury trial, according to documents filed in Los Angeles Superior Court.
Johnson, 63, wrote an article in Vanity Fair in November 2014 in which she claimed she was invited to Cosby’s house. There, she went on, he allegedly drugged her coffee – claims she repeated on various TV news programmes, including ABC’s Good Morning America and Nightline.
Cosby’s legal action claims that he never spent any time alone in his home with Johnson and that he asked for an injunction forcing Johnson to retract her public statements and take a chapter about him out of her memoirs.
In a statement, Johnson said: “In cases of rape and abuse, abusers will do whatever they can to intimidate and weaken their victims to force them to stop fighting.”
During 2014, dozens of women made public accusations that Cosby sexually assaulted them. Several of his live shows across the US were cancelled because of protests. Cosby enjoyed huge success during the 1980s with sitcom The Cosby Show, having previously been a actor and comedian for many years.