– An Alabama jury on Wednesday found that a woman did not defame former U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore when saying he sexually abused her when she was 14.
The same jury also found that Moore did not defame the woman, Leigh Corfman, when he defended himself against her accusations, according to the Montgomery County Clerk’s office.
Moore, a Republican known for staunchly conservative views, was defeated in Alabama’s special election for the U.S. Senate in 2017. Doug Jones became the first Democrat sent to the Senate from Republican stronghold Alabama in a quarter century. Jones was defeated in 2020 by Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville.
Moore was a highly controversial candidate whose campaign was beset by allegations that he sexually assaulted or pursued teenage girls while he was in his 30s. He has repeatedly denied the misconduct allegations, saying they were a result of “dirty politics.”
Alabama media outlet AL.com cited Moore as saying after the jury’s decision was announced that it was a “huge victory” that vindicated him.
But Neil Roman, an attorney for Corfman, said that the jury also finding that his client did not defame Moore “found that Leigh was telling the truth about her experience with Mr. Moore.”
Calls to Roman and Moore’s legal team were not immediately returned.
Last year, comedian Sacha Baron Cohen won a dismissal of a $95 million defamation lawsuit Moore brought against him, when he claimed he was tricked into being portrayed falsely as a sex offender on Cohen’s Showtime series “Who Is America?”
(Reporting by Brad Brooks in Lubbock, Texas; Editing by Marguerita Choy)