In the past year, more than 40 women have come forward with decades-old accusations of sexual assault against The Cosby Show star, but the statute of limitations has expired in almost all of the cases, preventing the alleged victims from pursuing criminal charges, and Cosby, who maintains his innocence, has never been charged with any offence.

Several accusers, including supermodel Janice Dickinson and Kristina Ruehli, have launched defamation lawsuits against the 78 year old, and Cosby is now taking his own legal action by suing Tamara Green, Therese Serignese, Linda Traitz, Louisa Moritz, Barbara Bowman, Joan Tarshis and Angela Leslie for making "malicious, opportunistic and false and defamatory accusations of sexual misconduct against him".

In the lawsuit filed on Monday (14Dec15) in Massachusetts, Cosby claims the accusations have caused him "substantial injuries" and damage to his reputation and character. He is seeking unspecified punitive and compensatory damages.