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Judge weighs bid to dismiss child sex abuse claim against Bill Cosby

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Lawyers for comedian Bill Cosby and a woman accusing him of sexually abusing her as a child were due to face off in a California courtroom on Thursday over a defense bid to dismiss her lawsuit for reasons related to the statute of limitations.

Cosby, 78, whose career and public image as the model American family man have been shattered by mounting allegations of sexual misconduct, lost a previous bid to fend off the same lawsuit on similar grounds last year.

His accuser in that case, Judy Huth, now in her 50s, sued Cosby in December 2014, alleging that he plied her with alcohol and molested her during an encounter at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles in 1974, when she was 15.

Cosby has called Huth’s account a fabrication and asserted that her case against him grew out of a failed extortion attempt.

Huth is one more than 50 women who have come forward over the past two years to publicly accuse Cosby of rape and other forms of sexual abuse. Most involve incidents said to have occurred a decade ago or more, too long to be criminally prosecuted, or even litigated in civil court.

But authorities in Pennsylvania charged the entertainer in December with sexually assaulting a woman in 2005. And at least nine other women – eight of them in Massachusetts – are currently suing Cosby for defamation, claiming they were smeared by his public assertions that their allegations of sexual wrongdoing were false.

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Huth, however, filed her suit under a California law allowing victims of childhood abuse to sue beyond the statute of limitations if, within the last three years, they have realized they suffered from psychological damage that previously was repressed.

Cosby’s lawyers have countered that Huth’s claim fails to meet that test, saying she “unsuccessfully tried to sell her story to the tabloids nearly a decade ago.”

“This fact belies the allegations in the lawsuit that (Huth) only just discovered the basis for her claims within the past three years,” defense lawyers argued in their court filing. According to Cosby’s lawyers, Huth sued the comedian only after unsuccessfully trying to extort him for hush money.

Cosby’s lawyers also have sought dismissal of Huth’s complaint on grounds that she lacked the required certification from mental health professionals to support her claims.

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Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Craig Kaplan was expected to hear arguments from both sides and possibly render a ruling on Thursday.

(Reporting by Steve Gorman in Los Angeles)

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New York Times drops the hammer on the ‘breathtaking arrogance’ of Kelleyanne Conway in brutal editorial

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Addressing a report from the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel recommending White House counsel Kellyanne Conway should be fired for flagrant violations of the Hatch Act, the New York Times editorial board hammered President Donald Trump's confidante over her smirking response.

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‘Be ashamed’: Anthony Scaramucci’s wife deletes tweet after Soledad O’Brien opens a can of whoop ass on her

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Soledad O'Brien

Soledad O'Brien, a former CNN anchor, clashed with the wife of Trump surrogate Anthony Scaramucci over the weekend.

In a tweet on Friday, O'Brien complained that cable new networks were continuing to book the former White house communications director even though he has little of substance to add to the discussions.

"Why do you guys put this crap on tv?" O'Brien wrote after seeing an interview with Scaramucci. "Seriously it’s an insult to your viewers. And also absurd. Is there no one else in the whole world to book but this mediocre dude?"

Scaramucci's wife, Deidre, was moved to criticize O'Brien.

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Sen. Tom Cotton calls for unauthorized ‘retaliatory strike’ on Iran with ‘the fire and fury of the military’

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Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) on Sunday called for a "retaliatory strike on Iran" after Trump administration officials alleged that the country is behind attacks on oil tankers.

"Well, Iran for 40 years has engaged in this kind of attacks, going back to 1980s," Cotton told CBS host Margaret Brennan.

"These unprovoked attacks a warrant retaliatory strikes," he added. "We can make a military response in the time and matter of our choosing."

"A retaliatory strike?" Brennan pressed. "As someone who sits in Congress, do you believe that he can act, the administration can act without coming to Congress first?"

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