New York State Supreme Court Judge Jennifer G. Schecter ruled that Kesha “made a false statement to Lady Gaga about Gottwald and that was defamatory.” According to Pitchfork, the “defamatory” remarks mentioned in the court documents refer to text messages that Kesha sent to Lady Gaga, in which Kesha alleged that Gottwald raped Katy Perry. Schecter noted that Perry denied the claim and that there was no other supporting evidence to back up Kesha’s message to Gaga. “Publication of a false statement to even one person, here Lady Gaga, is sufficient to impose liability,” the judge wrote.
Schecter also rejected Kesha’s series of defenses, with one being that Gottwald was a public figure. “Though Gottwald has sought publicity for his label, his music, and his artists—none of which are the subject of the defamation here—he never injected himself into the public debate about sexual assault or abuse of artists in the entertainment industry,” Schecter wrote. “The only reason Gottwald has any public connection to the issues raised in this lawsuit is because they were raised in this lawsuit.”
It was also ruled that Kesha was in breach of contract with Gottwald’s company KMI due to late royalty payments. Kesha was ordered to pay $374,000 in interest. Kesha’s legal team had made a statement after the ruling. “Judge Schecter issued rulings today on motions for summary judgment in the Dr. Luke litigation. We disagree with the Court’s rulings. We plan to immediately appeal.”
Dr. Luke’s lawyers also made a statement about the ruling, stating “Dr. Luke looks forward to the trial of his case where he will prove that Kesha’s other false statements about him were equally false and defamatory.”
Late last year, Kesha’s countersuit was denied against Dr. Luke for the second time to get out of her contract. The New York Court of Appeals 1st Department found her appeal “palpably insufficient and devoid of merit and added that it had been “speculative, contradicted by her own allegations that she had continued performing under the agreements.” She originally filed in 2017 and 2018. At this time is where Gaga also gave her disposition for the ongoing trial.
Photo Credit: Sharon Alagna