Trump groping lawsuit dropped by ex-Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos

Summer Zervos ‘stands by allegations’ and has not accepted pay-out for cancelling suit, her lawyers said

Arpan Rai
Saturday 13 November 2021 05:55
<p>File: Summer Zervos leaves Manhattan Supreme Court at the conclusion of a hearing in New York in December 2017 </p>

File: Summer Zervos leaves Manhattan Supreme Court at the conclusion of a hearing in New York in December 2017

A 2005 contestant of The Apprentice who had accused former president Donald Trump of sexual assault has dropped her defamation lawsuit after nearly five years, her lawyers announced.

Summer Zervos “no longer wishes to litigate against the defendant and has secured the right to speak freely about her experience”, lawyers Beth Wilkinson and Moira Penza said in a statement.

“Ms Zervos stands by the allegations in her complaint,” the statement read.

In 2017, Ms Zervos had alleged that Mr Trump forced himself on her in 2007 after she asked him for career advice. Following these allegations, Mr Trump had said that Ms Zervos was lying and that the charges of sexual assault against him were politically motivated.

Mr Trump had written on Twitter that the allegations against him were “lies” and a “hoax”, after which Ms Zervos moved the New York state court in January 2017 to sue the then-president for defamation.

Five years later, the defamation suit has been abruptly struck off without any apology or compensation from Mr Trump. Her legal team has said that she has not accepted a pay-out in lieu of cancelling the defamation suit against the former president.

Reacting to the cancellation of the suit, Mr Trump said he had been “totally vindicated”.

“It is so sad when things like this can happen, but so incredibly important to fight for the truth and justice. Only victory can restore one’s reputation,” the former president said in a statement shared by Save America, a political action body backing him.

Mr Trump’s attorney Alina Habba said that the defamation suit has been pulled by Ms Zervos because “she had no choice but to do so as the facts unearthed in this matter made it abundantly clear that our client did nothing wrong," reported Reuters.

Ms Zervos had participated in The Apprentice, a reality show hosted by Mr Trump, in 2005.

As a result of the withdrawal of the suit by Ms Zervos, the former president will not be questioned under oath for the sexual assault allegations against him.

Ms Zervos’s allegations were among the several claims of sexual assault and improper conduct against Mr Trump made by women during 2017. Prior to that, at least 13 women had come forward and accused the former president of rape, sexual assault and harassment — all of which the former president has strongly denied.

The former president had sought court permission to countersue Ms Zervos, citing interference with his right to speak freely which was protected under New York law, but the court denied him permission to do so in March.

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