Sean “Diddy” Combs was accused of rape and abuse that spanned more than ten years, according to a lawsuit that was filed in New York on Thursday.
The suit was filed in Manhattan’s Federal District Court by R&B singer Cassie — real name Casandra Ventura — who was previously romantically involved with Combs and recorded under his music label.
In the filing, Ventura alleged that Combs had used “copious amounts of drugs” — naming ecstasy and ketamine, among others — to control her, beat her, and had filmed her performing sex acts with male prostitutes against her will. She said that she had refrained from involving police because she worried it “would merely give Mr. Combs another excuse to hurt her.”
Ventura also claimed that in 2018, toward the end of their romantic relationship, Combs had pushed into her home and raped her, The New York Times reported on Thursday.
When she attempted to leave Combs and his label, Ventura alleged that he sent employees to bring her back: “Ms. Ventura felt that saying ‘no’ to Mr. Combs would cost her something — her family, her friends, her career, or even her life,” the filing said.
Ventura released a public statement on the matter, saying, “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.”
An attorney for Combs responded to the lawsuit, accusing Ventura of lying about his client because she was looking for a payoff.
“Mr. Combs vehemently denies these offensive and outrageous allegations. 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,” attorney Ben Brafman said on Combs’ behalf. “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.”
Attorney Douglas Wigdor, who is representing Ventura in the matter, disputed Brafman’s assertions — he claimed that Combs had offered “eight figures to silence her” and to stop her from filing the lawsuit, but that she had declined.