Bill Cosby’s attorneys have given opening statements in one of the last remaining legal claims against the comedian.
64-year-old woman Judy Hath brought the civil suit against Mr Cosby, alleging that the 84-year-old sexually assaulted her at the Playboy Mansion in 1974.
California state law allows alleged child sexual abuse survivors to bring their cases forward as an adult, with no statute of limitations.
Ms Hath’s legal team and testimony will rely on photos and other “archival exhibits” to clarify the incident at that point in time.
Mr Cosby’s team say no sexual abuse happened whatsoever and will angle that the burden of proof in the nearly 50-year-old case lies with the plaintiff.
They do not deny Mr Cosby taking Ms Huth (who was 16 at the time) to the Mansion, but unequivocally deny her being a “minor” at the time.
Mr Cosby turns 85 next month and was considered a cultural icon in the US due to his work on The Bill Cosby Show and I Spy, which the Pennsylvania-born comedy king won a combined four Primetime Emmy Awards for between 1966 and 1969.
He has also won two Golden Globe Awards and eight Grammys.
This is one of two remaining sexual assault or abuse claims against the Pennsylvania-born entertainer, after his insurer settled several other lawsuits of misconduct against his wishes.
In March, the US Supreme Court declined to review Mr Cosby’s sexual assault case, for which he was imprisoned for nearly three years before being released in June 2021.
An appeals court threw out his criminal sexual assault conviction (three counts of aggravated indecent assault against Andrea Constand) and he was promptly released.
Mr Cosby will not testify in the trial.