Bill Cosby is taking legal action against seven of the women who have accused him of sexual misconduct, according to his attorney Monique Pressley.
In a press release on Monday, Pressley lists the defendants as Tamara Green, Therese Serignese, Linda Traitz, Louisa Moritz, Barbara Bowman, Joan Tarshis and Angela Leslie.
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Pressley refers to the women's allegations as "malicious, opportunistic and false and defamatory."
"Mr. Cosby states plainly that he neither drugged nor sexually assaulted the defendants and that each defendant has maliciously and knowingly published multiple false statements and accusations from fall 2014 through the current day in an effort to cause damage to Mr. Cosby's reputation and to extract financial gains," Pressley writes. "Mr. Cosby's suit further states that defendants' multi-decade old, false, uncorroborated, opportunistic allegations of sexual assault have caused and continue to cause him to suffer substantial injuries and damages to reputation, business contracts, shame, mortification, damages to property, business, trade, profession and occupation."
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The suit is asking for punitive damages "to the maximum extent permitted by law," as well as a permanent injunction enjoining the women from continuing to publish "defamatory statements" and another injunction requiring the women to "publicly issue a statement and press release retracting and correcting its defamatory statements."
Cosby alleges that the women made up the claims in an attempt to "extract financial gain" and to hinder his return to television. According to the papers, the 78-year-old comedian was onboard to star in a new NBC family sitcom and had "existing contracts or an expectation of contract with Netflix at that time."
According to the filing, the defendants' allegations "induced both NBC and Netflix to postpone or cancel their contracts with Mr. Cosby by engaging in a campaign to assassinate Mr. Cosby's reputation and character."
In response to Cosby's claims, attorney Joseph Cammarata, who is representing the seven defendants, released a short statement.
"If anyone is surprised by Cosby's actions today, they shouldn't be," Cammarata wrote. "He's taken a page out of the defense attorney's playbook in an effort to shift the focus of this legitimate inquiry. It is curious that he has filed a claim only against these seven women, when there are scores of other women who have made similar allegations of sexual abuse and assault against Mr. Cosby. My clients remain resolute in their desire to have their day in court, sooner rather than later, and they each expect that their good name and reputation will be restored."