US President Donald Trump was sued by a US columnist over statements made by him in June while denying her allegations that he raped her at a New York luxury department store in the mid-1990s.
E Jean Caroll in a complaint filed against Trump in a New York state court in Manhattan stated that he lied about attacking her and "smeared her integrity, honesty, and dignity" by concocting a "swarm of related lies" in his explanation of why she would lie about the incident, reported Reuters.
An excerpt from E Jean Caroll's book titled 'What Do We Need Men For? A Modest Proposal' was published in New York Magazine in June. It divulged details about her experience of sexual assault by "real estate tycoon" in a first-person account headlined 'Hideous Men: Donald Trump assaulted me in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room 23 years ago. But he's not alone on the list of awful men in my life'.
Caroll revealed that she had met Trump at the store when she was 52 and helped to suggest a gift for 'a girl' after he sought her advice. She claimed that between 1995 and 1996, he 'lunged' at her at the upscale Bergdorf store's lingerie section, and pushed her against the wall while attempting to kiss her.
Trump denies allegations
Trump has repeatedly denied the allegations saying that Caroll is "totally lying" and said that the incident was made up to boost the sales of her book.
"I'll say it with great respect: Number one, she's not my type. Number two, it never happened. It never happened, OK?" Trump was quoted as saying to The Hill newspaper in Washington.
The lawsuit includes the account of she had confided to two friends, author Lisa Birnbach and former WCBS news anchor Carol Martin about the assault, and had decided to not approach authorities as she feared retribution.
Caroll decided to come forward about her account of sexual violence by men in a higher position of power after the accounts of sexual misconduct by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein resulted in the explosion of the #MeToo movement.
"No person in this country should be above the law -including the President," Carroll said in a statement provided by her lawyers.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham slammed the lawsuit and called Caroll a "fraud". "The lawsuit is frivolous and the story is a fraud - just like the author," adding that "The story she used to try and sell her trash book never happened, period."
At least 15 women have accused Trump of gross sexual misconduct against them years before he became the president.
Trump also faces a defamation lawsuit by Summer Zervos, a former contestant on his television show "The Apprentice." According to Zervos, Trump kissed her against her will in 2007 in New York and later groped her at a Beverly Hills hotel.
The lawsuit filed against Trump for posting a Tweet that accused Zervos' accusations as a "hoax."
A video of an Access Hollywood footage had emerged during his 2016 presidential election campaigns in which he controversially stated of having the liberty of grabbing women by their vagina because of his popularity.
Trump had apologised for the statement and said that it was "locker room" talk.