Comedians Tiffany Haddish and Aries Spears are facing a lawsuit alleging sexual battery, sexual harassment, and sexual abuse of a minor. Haddish’s lawyer, Andrew Brettler, says that the lawsuit is “bogus.”
A lawsuit was filed Tuesday (Aug. 30) to the Los Angeles County Superior Court by a 22-year-old woman identified as Jane Doe and for her brother, a minor born in 2007 who is identified as John Doe. John Doe is under Jane Doe’s legal guardianship. The suit alleges that both of them were assaulted by Haddish and Spears in Los Angeles years ago when they were minors.
“Plaintiff’s mother … has been trying to assert these bogus claims against Ms. Haddish for several years,” Haddish’s lawyer Andrew Brettler said in a statement shared with USA TODAY. “Every attorney who has initially taken on her case – and there were several – ultimately dropped the matter once it became clear that the claims were meritless and Ms. Haddish would not be shaken down.”
Spears’ legal team is using the same terminology. In a statement to USA TODAY, Spears’ attorney Debra Opri said the comedian “isn’t going to fall for any shakedown.”
The suit claims Haddish was a “longtime family friend” of the Does’ mother. It details several instances of alleged grooming and molestation about eight years ago while they were working on a “Funny or Die” project. Detailed in the suit, the project allegedly included a “soft porn molestation video of Mr. Doe” that they claim was not removed from the media company’s platforms until last May.
“‘Funny Or Die’ found this video absolutely disgusting and would never produce such content,” the company said in a statement provided to USA TODAY Friday (Sept. 2). “We were not involved with the conceptualization, development, funding, or production of this video. It was uploaded to the site as user-generated content and was removed in 2018 immediately after becoming aware of its existence.”
The lawsuit states that due to several instances involving alleged grooming and child molestation that both Jane and John Doe suffer from social disorders while John additionally struggles with anxiety and depression.
“The plaintiffs are both traumatized for life” as a result of Haddish’s and Spears’ actions, the lawsuit alleges, later adding: “Similar to the manner in which Giselle (sic) Maxwell groomed young girls for Jeffrey Epstein, upon information and belief, Haddish made Plaintiff Jane Doe feel comfortable and special, but this was all a grooming tactic by Haddish to entice and coerce both children into filming sexually explicit child pornography skits.”
According to the lawsuit, “the plaintiffs’ mother previously attempted to work out a $15,000 settlement with Spears over the video of John Doe. She was unsuccessful due to her ‘mental state’ and a few missteps in the legal process.”
The suit does not specify the monetary value the plaintiffs are seeking.