Renita Hill sued the former The Cosby Show star in October (15), claiming he and his lawyers made her appear as a "liar" after vehemently denying allegations he had drugged her drinks and molested her while she was passed out during their stint on the road together in the 1980s.

She went public with her story in a U.S. TV interview in 2014, joining a string of other reported victims who came forward with similar stories about time they spent with the veteran actor.

Cosby fought back against the defamation suit by insisting it held no merit as Hill was never mentioned by name in the original statements of denial. He and his lawyers also argued that even if Hill was referred to in the press releases, the comments had been simply a matter of opinion and were therefore protected by constitutional law.

On Thursday (21Jan16), a federal judge sided with Cosby's legal team and dismissed Hill's lawsuit without prejudice, banning her from amending and re-filing in future. Her lawyers are planning to appeal.

Cosby's representatives have yet to comment on the legal victory, but they are currently fighting another defamation suit filed by seven women in Massachusetts, who also insist their reputations were damaged when their credibility was called into question after speaking out about their decades-old sex allegations against the 78-year-old.

Cosby's wife, Camille, has been ordered to sit for a deposition regarding that case in February (16), while the actor's own testimony has been delayed for the time being, as he is currently fighting criminal charges in Pennsylvania, relating to an alleged attack on Andrea Constand, an employee at his alma mater, Temple University, in 2004.

He is currently free on $1 million (£670,000) bail following his arrest last month (Dec15), although his lawyers are attempting to have the case dismissed, suggesting a previous prosecutor broke a promise not to press charges over the embattled comedian's encounter with Constand.