Cosby lawyers ask to delay wife's deposition

Bill Cosby arriving at the courthouse with his attorney last week for his arraignment on sexual assault charges.
Bill Cosby arriving at the courthouse with his attorney last week for his arraignment on sexual assault charges.PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW YORK • Lawyers for Bill Cosby and his wife, Camille, asked a federal judge on Monday to delay a deposition by her scheduled for today in a defamation lawsuit brought by seven women who allege the entertainer sexually abused them.

The lawyers said in papers filed in United States district court in Massachusetts that the sworn interview should be delayed, pending an appeal on whether Mrs Cosby could be required to testify at all.

On Dec 31, a federal magistrate judge in Massachusetts rejected arguments by the comedian's wife of almost 52 years and his business manager, that the deposition would represent an "undue burden".

Cosby lawyers argued that the intimate nature of the questions expected during the deposition justified a delay, noting that their ability to object to such evidence at the trial would not spare their client embarrassment.

The Dec 31 ruling came a day after Cosby, 78, was charged with sexually assaulting a woman who prosecutors say the comedian plied with drugs and alcohol in 2004, the only criminal case filed against the entertainer.

He is free on US$1 million (S$1.4 million) bail.

His lawyer has said the entertainer is not guilty and will not consider a plea bargain.

The Massachusetts civil lawsuit against him was filed in December 2014 by Ms Tamara Green, later joined by six women.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 06, 2016, with the headline 'Cosby lawyers ask to delay wife's deposition'. Print Edition | Subscribe