The legal battle between Kesha and Dr. Luke continues to get uglier and uglier. In 2014, after Kesha sued Dr. Luke for sexual assault and emotional abuse, the producer countersued Kesha for exortion and sued her mother Pebe Sebert in both New York and Tennessee, claiming that she engineered the accusations to get Kesha out of her recording contract. A New York judge dismissed the suit against Kesha’s mother back in February, but the Tennessee suit still stands. And now, as Billboard reports, Dr. Luke has filed yet another defamation suit against Sebert, citing social media posts and a recent Billboard interview.
“After we originally filed suit against Pebe Sebert, she continued to make outrageous, false and defamatory statements against Dr. Luke in her widespread media campaign to damage him and smear his name,” Dr. Luke’s lawyer Christine Lepera tells Billboard. “Pebe Sebert’s lawyers flat out refused to allow us to add those statements to the existing case or to toll the statute of limitations on them — so we’ve been compelled to file an additional action.”
In response, Alex Little, a lawyer for Pebe Sebert who also represents Kesha, has issued the following statement to Pitchfork: “This marks Dr. Luke’s second effort to sue a mother for publicly supporting and believing her daughter about being raped. It’s also a transparent attempt to delay the trial of these issues. Mrs. Sebert looks forward to presenting her case to a jury as soon as possible. When the evidence is made public, she expects the jury will conclude that all of her statements have been justified.”
When filing this new lawsuit, Dr. Luke’s lawyers argued that his New York suit against Kesha herself should proceed before the suit against Kesha’s mom, claiming the case “requires a resolution of the underlying factual dispute as to whether [Kesha] was sexually abused by [Dr. Luke].” Conversely, Sebert’s say there is no reason to delay, claiming, “The only potential outcome from further delay is that, after the New York case, [Dr. Luke] may make a different strategic choice about the wisdom of suing a mother of a rape victim for supporting her daughter.”
Kesha recently dropped her lawsuit against Dr. Luke in California, but she’s still pursuing a different suit against him in New York.