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US writer sues Donald Trump as Adult Survivors Act takes effect

Former US President Donald Trump. PA

Former US President Donald Trump was sued by journalist and writer E Jean Carroll for allegedly raping her in the 1990s. Carroll is among the first to be prosecuted under the Adult Survivors Act which came into force Thursday.

The new law lifts the statute of limitations for a period of one year on civil actions for sexual offenses. It allows victims to press charges against their alleged abusers even if the incident took place a long time ago and the statutes of limitations have expired.

The 78-year-old filed a lawsuit in Manhattan federal court against Trump. In her complaint, Carroll alleged the attack took place in the dressing room of a New York luxury department store more than 27 years ago.

She also filed a defamation lawsuit after Trump accused her of lying when she first made the allegations in 2019 and further called her allegations “fiction”. A civil trial for that case is scheduled for February 6.

In a statement, Carroll’s attorney, Roberta Kaplan, said the new lawsuit filed on Thursday seeks to hold Trump responsible for the alleged assault. Alina Habba, who represents Trump, told US media that she respects and admires people who come forward “this case is, unfortunately, an abuse of the purpose of this law” and “risks delegitimizing the credibility of the actual victims. “.

Many advocates for victims of sexual abuse believe that the legislation provides an opportunity for people to come forward, who did not act sooner due to trauma or fear of reprisal. Notably, several states, including New Jersey, California, Arizona and Montana, have also extended or temporarily removed their statutes of limitations for sexual offenses.

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