On Wednesday, a federal judge gave a masseur the right to stay anonymous while pressing assault charges against “House of Cards” actor, Kevin Spacey.
The suit was filed last October by the massage therapist who claimed the actor attempted to kiss him and forcefully grabbed his privates during a massage session at Malibu in 2016. The suit was initially filed in a state court at Los Angeles before Spacey’s attorney applied to move it to federal court since Spacey lives in Maryland. The complainant’s attorneys asked for the case to be moved back to the state court but were declined.
The actor is also facing charges at a district Court in Nantucket for sexually assaulting an 18-year-old busboy at the Club Car in July 2016.
During the hearing, Spacey’s attorneys argued with Judge Ronald Lew to dismiss the suit due to the complainant’s anonymity but the therapist’s attorneys argued that disclosing his identity will likely jeopardize his public image and business and also exposes him to physical harm. Judge Ronald Lew ruled in favor of the therapist and allowed him to remain anonymous.
In the judge’s ruling, he cited the complainant’s vulnerability, his status as a high-profile celebrity and unwanted media attention as the basis for the ruling. According to him, anonymity is a necessity to protect the complainant’s privacy and prevent further traumas to the plaintiff. He, however, promised to revisit the case if the anonymity prevents the accused’s lawyers from conducting a full investigation.