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Cosby defense team makes appeals filing

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Bill Cosby’s lawyers argued in an appeals filing Tuesday that it was “fundamentally unfair” to let prosecutors use Cosby’s damaging deposition from a sex accuser’s lawsuit against him at trial.

Cosby believes he had a binding promise from a prosecutor that he could never be charged in the case, and said testimony from five other accusers about encounters that took place years — or even decades — earlier had improperly prejudiced the jury against him.

A spokeswoman for the Montgomery County district attorney’s office declined comment but said prosecutors would file a response in the coming month.

Cosby, 83, is serving a 3- to 10-year prison term after the jury in his 2018 sex assault trial convicted him of three counts of felony sex assault over a 2004 encounter with accuser Andrea Constand.

The filing claims a deposition by Cosby regarding the use of Quaaludes and allegations of uncharged sexual misconduct with about a half-dozen women “was irrelevant evidence that served no legitimate non-propensity purpose.”

Cosby’s lawyers argued those incidents occurred too long ago, in some cases going back to the 1970s, and that they lacked “any striking similarities” or comparable facts to the crimes he was tried for.

A former prosecutor had declined to prosecute Cosby when she went to police in 2005. However, another prosecutor reopened the case in 2015 after The Associated Press successfully petitioned a federal judge to unseal filings in the lawsuit she filed against him.

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