New York Court Rules Against Kesha’s Anti-SLAPP Defense in Dr. Luke Defamation Lawsuit

A New York court has ruled that the state’s updated anti-SLAPP laws do not apply to the defamation lawsuit filed against Kesha by Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald, reversing a decision made by New York Supreme Court Justice Jennifer Schecter last June. The First Judicial Department of the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court made the decision on Thursday (March 10), as Billboard reports and Pitchfork can confirm. 

“The fact that the amended statute is remedial, and that the legislature provided that the amendments shall take effect immediately, does not support the conclusion that the legislature intended retroactive application of the amendments,” wrote the court in their decision. Pitchfork has contacted representatives for both Kesha and Dr. Luke for comment.

Last year, Judge Schechter had ruled that New York’s expanded anti-SLAPP legislation applied retroactively to Dr. Luke’s defamation suit, which has been open since 2014. The new legislation, which discourages frivolous lawsuits intended to suppress free speech, meant that Dr. Luke would have to prove that Kesha had acted with “actual malice” in making her allegations. Judge Schecter’s ruling would have also allowed Kesha to file a counterclaim for her legal fees, which is no longer the case.  A trial date for settling the suit has not been set.

Source : Pitchfork