Cassie accuses Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs of rape, abuse in lawsuit
NEW YORK (AP) — Sean “Diddy” Combs, was accused in a lawsuit Thursday of subjecting R&B singer Cassie to a yearslong relationship that included beatings and rape.
Cassie, whose legal name is Casandra Ventura, alleged in the suit filed against the producer and music mogul in New York federal court that Combs brought her into his “ostentatious, fast-paced, and drug-fueled lifestyle” not long after she met him and signed to his label when she was 19 and he was 37 in 2005.
Attorney Ben Brafman said Combs “vehemently denies” the allegations.
Ventura, now 37 herself, said Combs, now 54, began the pattern of abuse began as soon as their relationship did.
The suit alleges that, “prone to uncontrollable rage,” he subjected her to “savage” beatings in which he punched, kicked and stomped her. It alleges he plied her with drugs, and forced her to have sex with other men while he masturbated and filmed them.
The suit says that as she was trying to end the relationship in 2018, Combs forced her into her Los Angeles home and raped her.
“After years in silence and darkness, I am finally ready to tell my story, and to speak up on behalf of myself and for the benefit of other women who face violence and abuse in their relationships,” Ventura said in a statement.
The Associated Press does not typically name people who say they have been sexually abused unless they come forward publicly as Ventura has.
Brafman called the allegations “lies.”
“For the past six months, Mr. Combs has been subjected to Ms. Ventura’s persistent demand of $30 million, under the threat of writing a damaging book about their relationship, which was unequivocally rejected as blatant blackmail,” he said in a statement. “Despite withdrawing her initial threat, Ms. Ventura has now resorted to filing a lawsuit riddled with baseless and outrageous lies, aiming to tarnish Mr. Combs’s reputation and seeking a payday.”
Ventura’s lawyer Douglas Wigdor responded in a statement that Combs offered her “eight figures to silence her and prevent her the filing of this lawsuit. She rejected his efforts and decided to give a voice to all woman who suffer in silence.”
Combs is among the most influential hip-hop