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Criminal Sex Assault Case Against Bill Cosby Can Proceed, Judge Rules

A verbal agreement made between the comedian's attorney and a former prosecutor to not press charges in a sex assault case in Pennsylvania is no longer valid, a judge ruled Wednesday.

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The criminal sexual assault case against Bill Cosby can proceed after a judge on Wednesday ruled that an agreement made by a previous prosecutor to not press charges does not apply to his successor.

Cosby's attorneys filed the motion to dismiss the case in January, arguing that the actor's former attorney, Walter M. Phillips, made an oral "binding non-prosecution agreement" with then Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce Castor regarding the alleged 2004 attack.

In court Tuesday, Castor testified that he had made the "non-prosecution agreement" after seeing "red flags" in the alleged victim's testimony.

Castor also testified that Cosby would "had to have been nuts" to say what he did in a 2005 deposition for a lawsuit if he thought he could be charged.

In that deposition, Cosby talked about extramarital affairs and giving quaaludes to women before having sex with them.

The alleged victim, Andrea Constand, met Cosby at Temple University, and has accused him of drugging and sexually assaulting her at his suburban mansion.

Castor testified he had concerns about Constand waiting a year before reporting the assault and contacting a lawyer before going to police, 6ABC News reported. He also said he believed she had been "inappropriately touched by Mr. Cosby."

On Wednesday, her attorney testified that the former district attorney never told her about the agreement not to prosecute the comedian.

More than 40 women have accused Cosby publicly of sexual assault, but he has denied the allegations against him. The statue of limitations has passed for most cases.

Judge Steven T. O'Neill also rejected a motion by Cosby's attorneys to dismiss current Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele from heading the case, the Associated Press reported.

Cosby's attorneys had agued that Steele's decision to file a criminal case against their client was politically motivated, and that he had implied he would prosecute the actor during his election campaign last year.


Salvador Hernandez is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.

Contact Salvador Hernandez at salvador.hernandez@buzzfeed.com.

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