Disgraced former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has subpoenaed five of the 11 women who accused him of sexual harassment as he prepares to mount a defense in a federal lawsuit.
Cuomo’s legal team sent subpoenas to Lindsey Boylan, Brittany Commisso, Virginia Limmiatis, Ana Liss and Alyssa McGrath between late March and April, according to lawyers involved in the case talking to The Wall Street Journal.
Cuomo, 65, resigned in August 2021 as state lawmakers prepared to impeach and remove him from office over a cascade of sexual misconduct allegations that were investigated by New York Attorney General Letitia James.
The subpoenas are calling on Cuomo’s accusers to give depositions about their claims against him. They are also seeking records of communications the women had with investigators and reporters before going public with their claims.
The subpoenas are part of Cuomo’s defense against a civil lawsuit filed by an unidentified state trooper — known only as Trooper 1 — who accused the former governor of touching her inappropriately on her stomach and back while she was assigned to his security detail.
The plaintiff said that Cuomo’s conduct was part of a pattern of harassment that targeted multiple other women.
Cuomo has denied any inappropriate touching and apologized if he made anyone feel uncomfortable. He claimed the investigations that led to his resignation amounted to a political witch hunt, and painted himself as a victim of “cancel culture.”
Cuomo’s attorney Rita Glavin told WSJ Wednesday that seeking depositions and records from accusers was “part of routine discovery.” She said her client has not had the chance yet to question these women.
An attorney for Boylan, who became the first woman to publicly accuse Cuomo of sexual harassments in December 2020, claiming that he invited her to a game of strip poker, said her client has already participated in two probes.
“The extreme nature of this latest subpoena directed at my client demonstrates that Mr. Cuomo has no qualms about continuing his harassment of the women he abused and is using taxpayer dollars to do so,” Julie Gerchik told the outlet.
Lawyers in the case have until July to complete the process of discovery.
Cuomo’s legal team previously tried to subpoena James’ office and the state Assembly for records, but the ex-governor’s efforts were met with objections, and a decision on that matter is still pending.
Last month, Cuomo filed a lawsuit arguing that a state ethics watchdog lacks the legal authority to claw back the $5 million he earned from a controversial book deal.
Cuomo is asking the court to force the the state Commission on Ethics and Lobbying In Government to cease efforts to take the money ahead of a June 12 hearing on whether he improperly used state resources to pen his 2020 best-seller “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic.”
Cuomo, who’s been making public appearances and hosting a weekly podcast in a bid to rehabilitate his tarnished reputation, is facing a separate federal lawsuit brought against him by his one-time aide Charlotte Bennett, who accused her boss of asking inappropriate questions about her sex life and confiding in her that he was “lonely.”
Cuomo previously apologized for making Bennett feel uncomfortable but denied some of her allegations.
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