Rapper and music executive Sean Combs, formerly known as Puff Daddy or P. Diddy, was accused Thursday in New York by R&B singer Cassie, with whom he had a long-standing romantic relationship, of rape and sexual abuse for more than a decade, beginning in 2005.
Cassie, 37, whose real name is Casandra Ventura, also accused Diddy, 54, of sexually exploiting her and subjecting her to violent behavior, according to a sweeping civil lawsuit filed in federal court.
Ventura, who was once signed to his label, filed the suit under a one-year legal window to seek justice for past sex crimes made possible by New York State’s Adult Survivor Law, which expires in a week.
The singer alleged that shortly after they met in 2005, when she was 19 and he was 37, she signed with Combs’ music label, Bad Boy Records, and the professional relationship devolved into a sexual one in which he was controlling and abusive.
Among other things, she accuses the music executive of introducing her to a lifestyle of excessive alcohol and drug use, forcing her to have sex with male prostitutes and recording the encounters, according to a report by The New York Times.
She also alleges that Combs forced his way into the home and raped her in 2018, after which she severed ties with him and left his music label the following year.
The lawsuit indicates that Cassie did not report the events when they occurred for fear of retaliation, and in a statement released to the media, she explains that she now feels “ready” to do so, taking advantage of the legal window in New York.
“After years in silence and darkness,” she said, “I am finally ready to tell my story, and to speak up on behalf of myself and for the benefit of other women who face violence and abuse in their relationships.”
A lawyer for Combs, Ben Brafman, told the Times that his client vehemently denies the allegations and that Ventura is trying to blackmail him allegedly threatening to write a book about their relationship if he didn’t pay her $30 million.
A lawyer for Ventura, for his part, claimed that both parties spoke before the lawsuit and that Combs offered her an “eight-figure” payment for her silence, which she refused
By Ch Fahad Khan Janda