*The scheduled Wednesday deposition of Bill Cosby’s wife by lawyers for women who have accused the comedian of sexual assault will be conducted in strict secrecy, a U.S. magistrate judge has ordered.
Entered by Magistrate Judge David Hennessy late on Monday in U.S. District Court in Springfield, Massachusetts, the order follows a request by Cosby family attorneys to delay the deposition of Camille Cosby, the entertainer’s spouse of almost 52 years and business manager.
The judge ordered all evidence related to the case, including the deposition, to be held under seal, which would allow lawyers involved in the case to view it but prohibit public disclosure, reports Reuters.
The Massachusetts civil suit is one of a series of legal actions Cosby, 78, is facing over claims by more than 50 women that the actor sexually assaulted them after plying them with drugs and alcohol, in alleged instances that played out over decades.
Cosby’s lawyers had argued that, given the potentially intimate nature of the questions, Camille Cosby could be embarrassed if her responses were released publicly.
Lawyers for the seven women argued on Tuesday that the order sealing the deposition eliminated any need to delay it.
People magazine on Tuesday reported that Camille remained firm in her support of her husband, citing an unnamed source the magazine said was close to the family. “They remain steadfast and resolute about working through this together,” People quoted the source as saying.
A spokesman for Cosby did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report.
Prosecutors in Pennsylvania last week charged Cosby with sexually assaulting a women Andrea Constand, in 2004. That is the only criminal case filed against Cosby, who has repeatedly denied wrongdoing.
Cosby is free on $1 million bail and his lawyer has said the entertainer is not guilty and will not consider a plea bargain.