Marilyn Manson accuses ex Evan Rachel Wood of fraud, conspiracy in wild lawsuit

A man with dark hair wearing eye makeup and lipstick.
Marilyn Manson arrives at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party on Feb. 9, 2020, in Beverly Hills.
(Evan Agostini / Invision / Associated Press)
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Embattled rocker Marilyn Manson has fired back at his ex-fiancée Evan Rachel Wood in court, claiming that she and her partner resorted to fraud, conspiracy and defamation to torpedo his career.

Manson, 53, accused “Westworld” actor and artist Illma Gore of hatching plans to manufacture sexual-abuse allegations against him and to profit from them, as well as hacking into his computers and social media and impersonating an FBI agent in the process, according to a copy of the complaint obtained Wednesday by The Times.

The complaint, which is being filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, accuses Wood and Gore of intentional infliction of emotional distress, defamation, violation of the Comprehensive Computer Data Access and Fraud Act and impersonation over the internet.


Manson, whose real name is Brian Hugh Warner, is demanding a jury trial and a stop to Wood and Gore’s alleged actions.

Court records reviewed by The Times and nearly two dozen interviews portray Manson as a transgressive artist who mistreated and isolated women.

Nov. 5, 2021

“This action arises from the wrongful and illegal acts done in furtherance of a conspiracy by Defendant Evan Rachel Wood and her on-again, off-again romantic partner, Defendant Ashley Gore, a/k/a Illma Gore, to publicly cast Plaintiff Brian Warner, p/k/a Marilyn Manson, as a rapist and abuser—a malicious falsehood that has derailed Warner’s successful music, TV, and film career,” reads the complaint, which also alleges ethical and jurisdictional lapses.

Wood, 34, has accused Manson of sexual abuse over the years and alleged in a recent documentary that the singer “essentially raped” her during the filming of Manson’s 2007 “Heart-Shaped Glasses” music video.

The musician has denied the allegations made by Wood and others, previously calling his accusers’ statements “horrible distortions of reality.”

Wood was in a relationship with the singer that went public in January 2007. She was 19 when they began dating and he was 37. They were briefly engaged in 2010 before splitting up that August. In February 2021, Wood identified Warner as the alleged abuser she had referenced anonymously in the past.

Representatives for Manson and Wood did not immediately respond Wednesday to The Times’ requests for comment.


In a documentary that screened at Sundance, Evan Rachel Wood accuses Marilyn Manson of raping her while shooting a music video. His attorney denies it.

Jan. 24, 2022

In the complaint submitted by Manson’s attorney, Howard King describes Gore as “a grifter who understood that an organized attack on Warner — spearheaded by Wood’s own fabricated revelation of rape and abuse — could benefit them both.”

“With Gore’s help, Wood could be rebranded, from someone who ‘still might best be known for dating Marilyn Manson a decade ago,’ into an outspoken standard bearer for victims of domestic violence or sexual assault — thereby absolving her reputation for having a ‘wild past’ and her embarrassment for having been in a long-term relationship with Marilyn Manson,” the complaint reads.

King argues that between 2019 and 2021, Wood and Gore smeared the musician for profit and “secretly recruited, coordinated, and pressured prospective accusers to emerge simultaneously with allegations of rape and abuse” against Manson. King alleged that Wood and Gore reached out to Manson’s lovers and created the nonprofit Phoenix Act to help abused women, but allegedly used the organization as a cover for a money-making scheme against the musician.

Recently dropped by his label and talent agency, Marilyn Manson calls abuse allegations by Evan Rachel Wood and others ‘horrible distortions of reality.’

Feb. 2, 2021

“They impersonated an actual agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation by forging and distributing a fictitious letter from the agent ... They provided checklists and scripts to prospective accusers, listing the specific alleged acts of abuse that they should claim against Warner ... and They made knowingly false statements to prospective accusers (which have since been repeated by those accusers in court filings), including the defamatory claim that Warner filmed the sexual assault of a minor,” King said in the complaint.

The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department began investigating Manson last year after receiving reports of alleged sexual assault and domestic violence between 2009 and 2011 in West Hollywood, where he lived at the time. Officers raided Manson’s home in November and seized media-storage devices and other items during the investigation.