Media mogul Russell Simmons is seeking almost $35,000 in legal reparations from one of his rape accusers and her lawyer, E! News reported on Monday.
Simmons is demanding the money “for purposes of publicity, which this case has garnered,” according to legal documents obtained by E! News. The woman, identified only as Jane Doe, sued Simmons for $10 million in civil court in March alleging that the Def Jam founder raped her after a concert she attended with her young son in Sacramento, California, nearly three decades ago. The case was eventually thrown out because the statute of limitations had passed.
Doe’s suit was “baseless and was filed for an improper purpose” Simmons’ lawyers argued, according to the court filings.
The amount requested is specifically for legal fees Simmons paid for during the litigation period with Doe, according to the court filing.
“The court records show that Mr. Simmons’ attorneys motioned to dismiss a frivolous and frankly outrageous lawsuit,” she said. “The plaintiff had 21 days to withdraw the suit, after which, by statute, Mr. Simmons’ lawyers filed for dismissal, sanctions and appropriate legal fees.”
Simmons’ attorneys are also requesting that the judge impose sanctions against Doe’s lawyer, Douglas Mastroianni, accusing him of attorney misconduct. E! reports that Mastroianni and Doe “falsely [suggest] in her opposition… that Mr. Simmons is somehow more culpable here because the law firm that represents him in this action also has represented Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein.”
Simmons’ spokeswoman did not provide more information on why they are asking to impose sanctions on Mastroianni.
Over a dozen women have accused Simmons of sexual assault, including rape and attempted rape.
Doe’s lawsuit alleged that Simmons approached her and her elementary-age son at a concert, inviting the two to come backstage and meet Def Jam artists. She said Simmons later asked her to join an after-party at his hotel. The woman dropped off her son with a babysitter, then she and Simmons socialized at the party.
According to the suit, Simmons invited her up to his hotel room, claiming that he had no interest in sex. When the two arrived at his room, however, the woman said Simmons raped her.
“After entering the room, Simmons shut the door and said ‘I am going to f**k you,‘” the suit reads. “Plaintiff said she had no intention of having sexual relations with Simmons, but he replied ‘I am going to f**k you or I’m going to f**k your son. You decide.’”
Simmons denied the accusations in a statement in March, and later told Billboard the allegations are “a work of pure fiction.”
“I vehemently deny all the allegations made against me. They have shocked me to my core as I have never been abusive or violent in any way in my relations with women,” Simmons said in a statement in March. “I have submitted myself to multiple lie detector tests. I denied forced sex and sexual harassment allegations brought against me in each test; I also answered no to the question, ‘Have you ever physically forced any woman to have sexual intercourse?’ I passed all of the lie detector tests.”