An appeals court on Thursday rejected a $95 million defamation lawsuit against Comedian Sacha Baron Cohen filed by former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, who said he was tricked into a television appearance that lampooned sexual misconduct accusations against him.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, upholding a lower court’s ruling in favor of Baron Cohen, said Moore signed a disclosure agreement that prohibited any legal claims over the appearance.
The three judges also found it was “clearly comedy” when Baron Cohen demonstrated a so-called pedophile detector that beeped when it got near Moore and no viewer would think the comedian was making factual allegations against Moore.
The lawsuit centered on Moore’s unwitting appearance on the comic’s “Who is America?” show. The segment ran after Moore faced misconduct accusations during Alabama’s 2017 U.S. Senate race that he had pursued sexual and romantic relationships with teens when he was a man in his 30s. He denied the allegations.