Bill Cosby to be released from prison today after sexual assault conviction overturned

Bill Cosby (Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)
Bill Cosby (Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

Bill Cosby is about to be a free man after nearly three years in prison following a decision by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court vacating his 2018 conviction on three charges of aggravated indecent assault.

The comedian and actor has long maintained his innocence in the case, which stems from an accusation that he drugged and had sex with a Temple University employee in 2004.

The court ruling on Wednesday resulted from an agreement Mr Cosby struck with a district attorney, Bruce Castor, in 2005 wherein Mr Castor declined to prosecute Mr Cosby in exchange for the latter’s testimony during a civil trial.

The justices ruled that the agreement prevented prosecution for the claims brought by Andrea Constand, the Temple employee, and wrote that the prosecutorial discretion of Pennsylvania’s district attorneys was not “free of the constraints of due process”.

The shocking news comes a year after Mr Cosby’s parole was denied after he declined to participate in a sexual violence program conducted in the prison, with his attorneys arguing at the time that participation in such a program would make their client appear guilty.

Mr Castor previously made a name for himself earlier in 2021 as the lead attorney presenting the defense of former President Donald Trump during his second Senate impeachment trial.

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Bill Cosby news - live: TV star free after Pennsylvania court overturns sex assault conviction