2. Michael Egan, the man who in April accused X-Men director Bryan Singer of childhood sexual abuse, filed three new lawsuits against unnamed defendants in a California court on Monday.
The new complaints come just months after Egan made headlines by filing lawsuits in a federal court in Hawaii against Singer and three other Hollywood figures — theme park mogul Gary Goddard, former Disney executive David Neuman, and former NBC President Garth Ancier. All of the accused deny wrongdoing. Egan has since dropped all charges against Ancier and Neuman.
The new lawsuits, logged in Federal District Court in Los Angeles, do not reveal the identity of the alleged attackers, as California law requires court approval before naming defendants in this kind of case. However, they contain details that suggest that Singer, Ancier, and Goddard could potentially be the John Does.
The documents state that most of the alleged assaults took place at the Encino, California, mansion of early digital entrepreneur and registered sex offender Marc Collins-Rector — the same place where most of the assault described in the Hawaii complaints allegedly occurred. Egan filed a sexual assault lawsuit against Collins-Rector in 2000, winning a default judgment that he apparently has been unable to collect.
Egan had previously filed another lawsuit against an anonymous defendant. That complaint, also filed in California, came shortly after Egan dismissed his Hawaii lawsuit against Neuman. It identified the unnamed defendant as the president of one of Collins-Rector’s companies, Digital Entertainment Network — a title that Neuman once held.
The recent complaints contain details that could allow Egan to avoid California’s expired statute of limitations. For example, they state that the defendants paid Egan an undisclosed sum during and after the alleged assault. The documents go on to argue that these payments constituted “partial or advance damages” for childhood sexual abuse.
Under California’s Insurance Code, people who make such payments are required to inform their alleged victims of the applicable statute of limitations for a potential lawsuit against them. The recent complaints allege that the unnamed defendants never informed Egan of that statute, arguing that this omission has “continuously tolled the statute of limitations for when Plaintiff may bring this childhood sexual abuse lawsuit.”
California law states that a person may bring charges of childhood sexual assault up to eight years after they cease to be minors, or their 26th birthday. This brought Egan, who is now 32, to file his April lawsuits against Singer and the others in Hawaii, a state that has passed legislation allowing victims of childhood sexual abuse to file complaints after the ordinary statute of limitations has passed.
In order to take advantage of Hawaii’s legislation, Egan had to declare that at least some of the alleged abuse took place there. Singer and the other defendants’ have made this claim the center of their motions to have the lawsuits dismissed, citing a 2000 deposition in which Egan swore he had never been to Hawaii.
Jeff Herman, Egan’s attorney, declined to say whether the new lawsuits target Singer and the other three defendants in the Hawaii complaints. When asked about Egan’s recent dismissal of the Hawaii complaint against Ancier, Herman told BuzzFeed that Egan maintains all allegations against Ancier and that dropping the Hawaii lawsuit was “a strategic decision.”
Louise Ann Fernandez, Ancier’s attorney, said in a statement after Egan dropped his Hawaii lawsuit against her client that she was confident that “any further legal maneuvers or gimmicks will fail because unsupported statements, falsehoods and character smears have no place in any court.”
A representative for Singer declined to comment. A representative for Goddard did not immediately comment. Neuman’s attorney could not immediately be reached.