Comedian Bill Cosby's attempt to have his deposition testimony about alleged sexual assaults resealed was rejected by a federal appeals court, which decided that the issue is moot because the details have already been published.
The 3rd U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia ruled:
"Re-sealing the documents would not provide Cosby with any meaningful relief, and thus this appeal is moot. ... The contents of the documents are a matter of public knowledge, and we cannot pretend that we could change that fact by ordering them re-sealed."
As NPR's Jeff Brady reports, the deposition became public last summer after a request from The Associated Press to unseal testimony Cosby gave in 2005 in a lawsuit brought against him by Andrea Costand. She was a Temple University employee who claimed that he drugged and assaulted her in his home in 2004.
Cosby has insisted that their sexual relations were consensual. Cosby settled with Costand for an undisclosed sum.
As Jeff reports:
"It's the latest legal setback for the 79-year-old entertainer. In May, a Pennsylvania judge ruled there's enough evidence to put Cosby on trial for sexual assault charges."
The deposition is nearly 1,000 pages long and contains what the court called "damaging admissions" by Cosby, including testimony that he had extramarital affairs, and that he had sexual relations with a woman (not identified in the ruling) after giving her the sedative known as Quaaludes. According to a footnote in the ruling, "ingesting Quaaludes may render someone incapable of consenting to sex."