John Doe No. 117 filed a motion Monday in federal court
(Updated with response from Goddard’s attorney)
Anonymous plaintiff John Doe No. 117 filed a motion Monday in federal court to deny Gary Goddard’s dismissal request in the ongoing Hollywood sex abuse case.
In court documents obtained by TheWrap, attorneys for John Doe No. 117 stated that there is “no basis to dismiss Plaintiff’s claim,” nor should the anonymous plaintiff be forced to reveal his identity. The legal papers were filed in the United States District Court for the Central District of California.
On June 19, Broadway producer Goddard filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, brought by an anonymous plaintiff in May, which claimed that Goddard contacted the then British teen via social media in 2003 when he was 14, and the relationship allegedly escalated to nude webcam sessions when he was 15. Ultimately, the suit claimed that Goddard laid in a bed naked with the boy in a London hotel room when he was 15, and had sex with him when he was 16.
But Goddard’s dismissal request claimed that two of the counts in the complaint do not violate English law. The motion also stated that the entire complaint should be dismissed because the plaintiff has no justification for proceeding with the case anonymously.
John Doe’s newest motion states that Goddard “makes much in his Motion to Dismiss of the allegation that his physical sexual contact with John Doe began when John was 16 years old, which is the age of consent in England, ignoring entirely Goddard’s conduct in having visual depictions of John Doe engaging in sexually explicit conduct transmitted to him when John was only 15 years old.” The claim goes on to say that “given the nature of the federal and state claims alleged, as well as Goddard’s acts and conduct occurring from the State of California, there is no basis to apply foreign law or to deny John Doe a remedy based on the statutory violations alleged.”
In response to this story, Goddard’s attorney Paul E. Gaspari told TheWrap, “Our Motion to Dismiss is a procedural motion. While, solely for this purpose, the Court is required to assume that the factual allegations in the Complaint and Opposition are true, these inflammatory and provocative allegations have not been made under oath – and are denied. The Plaintiff is hiding behind the litigation privilege to make statements that would otherwise be actionable. We are confident that the Court will agree with our interpretation of the law. We look forward to defending claims which are pleaded properly on the merits, and ultimately restoring the good name of our client, Mr. Goddard.”
In a separate declaration, the plaintiff pleaded for continued anonymity: “I have requested that my attorneys file this action on my behalf using a pseudonym to protect me from harassment, injury, ridicule and personal embarrassment, to protect my privacy, as well as to protect my career as an actor. Further, filing anonymously has allowed me to remain psychologically sound in this process thus far and gives me the freedom to fully express my victimization.”
The suit, which also names director Bryan Singer as a co-defendant, was originally brought against Goddard in May in federal court in Los Angeles. The two are also co-defendants in an earlier sexual abuse lawsuit filed on behalf of Michael Egan. In June, Egan dismissed his suit against Goddard.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.