Music Producer Accuses Kesha’s Mom of Libel

     NASHVILLE (CN) — Grammy-nominated producer Dr. Luke claims that the mother of pop singer Kesha falsely accused him of raping her daughter, in what he calls an extortion scheme to get Kesha out of her recording contracts.
     Lukasz Gottwald aka Dr. Luke sued Pebe Sebert in Middle Tennessee Federal Court on Wednesday, alleging she defamed him. Sebert is the mother of recording artist Kesha, whose real name is Kesha Rose Sebert, according to the complaint.
     Gottwald alleges the elder Sebert “began to spread false, disgusting and highly damaging statements about Gottwald” in October 2013, in a “highly public extortion and smear campaign designed to pressure Gottwald into acquiescing to allowing Kesha out of her contracts.”
     Specifically, Sebert tweeted false allegations that Gottwald sexually abused Kesha, his lawsuit claims.
     “On Nov. 5, 2015, defendant again used her Twitter page to repeat her baseless allegations against Gottwald,” the complaint states. “That day, she posted a series of tweets that stated: ‘Kesha can’t legally put out music unless she makes it under complete control of a man who raped her at 18.’; ‘Sony supports the rapist.’; and ‘The rapist is doing exactly what he warned he would do.'”
     Sebert repeated the same allegations in a March 10 interview with Billboard magazine, Gottwald claims.
     But the producer says Kesha stated in a 2011 deposition for an unrelated case that he never abused her.
     “Dr. Luke never made sexual advances at me,” the singer said, according to Gottwald’s lawsuit.
     He claims Sebert and Kesha “expressed profound gratitude and admiration for all that Gottwald has done for their careers and their family” before accusing him of sexual abuse.
     Gottwald’s Sept. 7 complaint comes two years after he sued both Sebert and Kesha in New York County Supreme Court for defamation.
     His 2014 lawsuit was filed at the same time Kesha lobbed a sexual-assault action against him in Los Angeles.
     The singer claimed that “Dr. Luke sexually, physically, and verbally abused Ms. Sebert for a decade in order to make her feel completely worthless and maintain complete control over her life.” Kesha says she never spoke out because Gottwald threatened to “destroy both Ms. Sebert and her entire family.”
     Gottwald’s New York complaint claimed Kesha and her mother “know these accusations are false.”
     In his most recent case filed in Tennessee, he said the singer’s mother “has continued to publicly defame Gottwald to an even greater public audience via social media posts and interviews.”
     Gottwald seeks punitive damages. He is represented by Timothy Warnock of Riley Warnock & Jacobson in Nashville.
     Alex Little, Sebert’s attorney, said the latest lawsuit “marks Dr. Luke’s second effort to sue a mother for publicly supporting and believing her daughter about being raped.”
     “It’s also a transparent attempt to delay the trial of these issues,” Little said in a statement. “Mrs. Sebert looks forward to presenting her case to a jury as soon as possible. When the evidence is made public, she expects the jury will conclude that all of her statements have been justified.”
     Sebert is a songwriter, having co-written songs for Dolly Parton, Pitbull and her daughter.

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