Dr. Luke Sues Kesha for Defamation After Sexual Assault Allegation

The producer's attorney claims the pop star's suit is part of a "campaign of publishing outrageous and untrue statements"

Kesha is being sued by Dr. Luke after the pop star sued the producer, claiming sexual and physical abuse. Credit: Charley Gallay

Producer Dr. Luke, whom Kesha has sued for sexual assault and battery, has filed his own lawsuit against the pop star, suing the singer for defamation and breach of contract. He claims that Kesha has fabricated her allegations and has attempted to extort him so that she can end her contract with him. The producer filed his lawsuit on the same day the pop singer filed hers.

Luke, whose real name is Lukasz Gottwald, allegedly places blame on Kesha's mother, Pebe Sebert, and the singer's new managers. According to the suit, the singer said she would feed lies to the person behind the "Free Kesha" campaign last year, an online petition that alleged Gottwald was "controlling [her] like a puppet." He also claimed that he had had a copy of the lawsuit Kesha filed Tuesday for months and that she said she would file it if he would not release her from the contract, an act he's also calling extortion. 

"As set forth in the complaint that we have filed on behalf of Dr. Luke, Kesha and her mother are engaged in a campaign of publishing outrageous and untrue statements about Dr. Luke to third parties, including scurrilous and false statements of purported physical and mental abuse of Kesha," Gottwald's attorney, Christine Lepera, tells Rolling Stone.

"These are allegations that Kesha and Pebe have themselves admitted are false. The complaint explains that Kesha and her mother Pebe have wielded these defamatory statements in an attempt to extort Gottwald into releasing Kesha from her exclusive recording agreement with Dr. Luke.

"We understand that Kesha has filed a lawsuit of her own against Dr. Luke, though we have not yet seen it," she continued. "Undoubtedly, Kesha's lawsuit is nothing more than a continuation of her bad and offensive acts. We are confident that Dr. Luke will prevail in all matters, and that our client will be awarded substantial damages for this malicious conduct."

"This is just another pathetic and entirely predictable example of Dr. Luke's continued abuse, and a misguided attempt to keep Kesha under his tyrannical control," the pop star's lawyer, Mark Geragos, tells Rolling Stone. "This lawsuit has absolutely no basis in fact, the law or reality. Kesha is focused on reclaiming her voice and her freedom. She is determined to move on with her life and her career by putting this dark period behind her."

Kesha's lawsuit claimed that over the past decade, Gottwald has allegedly given her drugs and alcohol and physically and sexually assaulted her. She also blamed him for making comments that gave her a poor self-image of herself, prompting the eating disorder for which she received treatment earlier this year. The singer has requested that the presiding judge release her from her contract with Gottwald.