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Nine women file Nevada sexual assault lawsuits against Bill Cosby

The complaint was filed after Nevada passed a law repealing the statute of limitations on civil lawsuits related to sexual harassment.

A case in Nevada has become the latest in sexual assault allegations against Bill Cosby, adding to a string of high-profile allegations against the former US TV star.

On Thursday, nine women came forward in a lawsuit claiming Cosby — once known as “America’s Dad” — drugged and assaulted them between 1979 and 1992.

The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Nevada, describes the alleged assaults in dressing rooms, hotels and several of Cosby’s homes. It seeks damages for sexual assault, battery and false imprisonment, among other crimes.

The lawsuit comes on the heels of a change in Nevada law, removing the statute of limitations for civil survivors of adult sexual assault to file lawsuits.

Actor and comedian Bill Cosby leaves the Montgomery County Courthouse after being sentenced in his sexual assault trial on September 25, 2018, in Norristown, Pennsylvania, United States.
Comedian Bill Cosby was sentenced to three to 10 years in prison in Pennsylvania before his conviction. [File: Brendan McDermid/Reuters]

Previously, adult victims had only a two-year window to file civil complaints. But on June 2, Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo signed into law a bill titled Justice for Crime Victims — part of a nationwide trend to lift some restrictions on sexual assault allegations.

“For years, I have fought for victims of sexual assault, and today for the first time I will be able to fight for myself,” said Lise-Lotte Lublin, a school teacher and former model who has long pushed for statutes of limitations. Expanding the scope of sexual violence.

In a statement released through its lawyers, Lublin celebrated the passing of the law on June 2.

“With the new law changes, I now have the power to take my assailant, Bill Cosby, to court. My journey has just begun, but I am grateful for this opportunity to seek justice,” he said.

Initially, inspired by other women coming forward, Lublin filed charges against Cosby in Las Vegas in late 2014. But he soon discovered that his case could not proceed because the statute of limitations had expired

She alleges that Cosby called her to the Las Vegas Hilton Hotel in 1989, to practice acting techniques. Once there, she claims Cosby gave her spiked alcohol to “help her relax.” But he quickly loses consciousness, later reawakening in his own bed, not knowing how he got there.

Lublin told US media that she recognized her experiences in other women’s stories, particularly during the #MeToo movement.

A woman speaks into a microphone at a court hearing, while a second woman leans in to watch
Lis-Lotte Lublin, left, testifies that she was drugged and assaulted by Bill Cosby in Carson City, Nevada, with attorney Gloria Allred, right. [File: Cathleen Allison/AP Photo]

More than 60 women have accused Cosby of sexual assault, harassment or rape, including drug use. One of the nine women in Thursday’s complaint alleges that Cosby drugged her with non-alcoholic cider and raped her in a Nevada hotel room, for example.

Another Los Angeles woman received $500,000 last year after she claimed Cosby sexually assaulted her at the Playboy Mansion when she was 16. That lawsuit was also made possible by California’s decision to waive the statute of limitations on civil suits for sexual assault.

But in 2021, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court handed down a high-profile felony conviction against Cosby that saw him serve three years in prison.

The court argued that Cosby’s “due process rights” were violated when a prosecutor assured the TV star that he would not be charged if he testified. After he did so — explaining that he had given women Quaalude before sex — the testimony later became key evidence in a criminal case that was overturned.

Cosby maintains his innocence, and his lawyers and campaign team have sparked a legal movement to broaden or eliminate the statute of limitations on civil sexual assault lawsuits.

“These judges and lawmakers are consistently allowing these civil cases to flood their dockets, knowing that these women are not fighting for victims but for their addiction to media attention and greed,” Cosby publicist Andrew Watt said Wednesday.

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