SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) — A spokesman says that Bill Cosby’s insurer authorized a settlement of defamation lawsuits against him and that the comedian did not personally sign off on them.READ MORE: Sheraden United Methodist Church Holds 'Blessing Of The Animals' At Site Of Former Church
Spokesman Andrew Wyatt said in an email Friday that Cosby’s insurer settled the case without the comedian’s “knowledge, permission and/or consent.”
Records filed Friday in Massachusetts show that seven women who filed defamation lawsuits against Cosby over his response to their sexual misconduct allegations settled their claims.
The women say Cosby labeled them liars when he and his agents denied the accusations.
The 81-year-old Cosby went to prison last fall in a separate Pennsylvania sex assault case. He is serving a three- to 10-year prison sentence.
The judge overseeing the defamation cases must still approve the settlement. The terms are not disclosed in the documents filed Friday.
It’s not yet clear whether Cosby will now drop his counterclaims against the seven women, including one who recently died. They are among the dozens of women who have accused Cosby of sexual misconduct. He has denied their allegations and is appealing his Pennsylvania conviction.READ MORE: National Weather Service Determines No Tornado Touched Down In Butler County On Saturday
The women suing Cosby for defamation say he defamed them by branding them liars after they went public with allegations of sexual assault. They include Tamara Green, Therese Serignese and Barbara Bowman.
Cosby has denied their allegations.
Lawyer Joseph Cammarata, who represents the women, told The Associated Press on Friday that “each plaintiff is satisfied with the settlement.” He declined to comment further.
However, he warned in a status report also filed Friday that his clients would seek to depose Cosby and gather other documents and evidence if he does not drop the counterclaims, which accuse the women of harming his reputation through their accusations.
Cosby’s wife, Camille, had been ordered to give a deposition in the case in 2016, after a heated court fight over her testimony.
Lawyers for the Cosbys tried to quash her subpoena to testify, saying she didn’t have any relevant information on the women’s claims and that any marital conversations she had with her husband of 50 years were confidential. The judge agreed that marital conversations were private, but the women’s lawyers noted she also served as his business manager throughout their long marriage.
The case had largely been put on hold, though, while Cosby was amid the Pennsylvania criminal case, which involved a 2017 trial that ended in a deadlock and his conviction at a 2018 retrial.MORE NEWS: Suspect In Custody After Woman Killed, Man Injured In Kennedy Twp. Shooting
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