Kevin Spacey’s attorney calls accusers ‘liars,’ says internet turned on his client

Kevin Spacey is photographed in a gray suit and black-framed glasses as he walks into a courthouse.
Kevin Spacey’s attorney called three of his accusers “liars” during the closing arguments of his sexual assault trial in London.
(Aaron Chown / Associated Press)

Kevin Spacey‘s attorney called three of the actor’s accusers “liars” during closing arguments in the Oscar winner’s sexual assault trial in London on Thursday.

Patrick Gibbs went on to dismiss one of the alleged incidents involving a fourth accuser as “a clumsy pass” and asked the jury not convict his client, the Associated Press reported.

“A man who is promiscuous, not publicly out, although everyone in the business knows he’s gay, who wants to be just a normal guy,” Gibbs said of Spacey. “It’s a life that makes you an easy target when the internet turns against you and you’re tried by social media.”


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The “House of Cards” actor has pleaded not guilty to all charges, which include sexual assault and causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent. However, the judge on Wednesday threw out some indecent assault charges that had been included, citing a legal technicality.

The charges stem from the accusations from four men who alleged they were assaulted in separate incidents between 2001 to 2013. Spacey lived in London from 2004 to 2015 when he was working as artistic director at the Old Vic theater.

Earlier in closing arguments, the prosecutor in the case, Christine Agnew, accused Spacey of leveraging his celebrity to get away with “cruel” assaults. She said they left the four men feeling “small, diminished and worthless.” Spacey had hoped his fame would keep them silent, the prosecutor said.

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However, Spacey’s attorney, Gibbs, countered that by saying that his client was the victim of a power imbalance and was forced to disprove the lies against him.

“With each allegation that’s discredited, the possibility, the reality that false allegations, even apparently convincing false allegations, not always, but sometimes, really do happen — especially where fame, money, sex, secrets, shame and sexual confusion are all in the mix,” Gibbs said.

Spacey’s attorneys spent much of the trial trying to discredit his accusers. To aid their argument against a driver who claimed Spacey forcefully grabbed his crotch while driving to Elton John’s gala ball in 2004 or 2005, John and his husband, David Furnish, testified earlier this week. Furnish said that Spacey did not attend the annual party at their home in Windsor, England, the year the accuser said he was attacked. John echoed that and said Spacey had attended only once, sometime in the early 2000s.


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When Spacey took the witness stand last week, he said his encounters with the driver and with another accuser were consensual. He called a claim from another man, who accused him of grabbing his genitals, “pure fantasy.” He also testified that he didn’t remember touching the groin of a man he met at a pub during a night of heavy drinking, but accepted that it probably happened while he was making a move on the man.

Gibbs suggested that “maybe in this country ... we don’t convict people of a crime ... for making a clumsy pass.”

Another man alleged that he went to Spacey’s home for mentorship and beer and stayed the night, only to wake up the next morning to find the actor performing oral sex on him. Gibbs used phone records to prompt doubt around that account, showing that the man had continued to communicate with Spacey after the night in question — despite his insistence that he hadn’t. He had also said the man scrubbed his social media account and resisted sharing his phone data with police during their investigation.

The nine men and three women on the jury are expected to begin deliberating Monday.

In a separate case, a civil trial in New York, a jury decided that Spacey did not molest actor Anthony Rapp when Rapp was 14, while both were relatively unknown actors in Broadway plays in the 1980s. The case has been the most high profile of accusations against Spacey and arrived in 2017 as an outgrowth of the #MeToo movement. Spacey lost roles in various projects, including his Emmy-winning Netflix show, “House of Cards.”

Times staff writer Christie D’Zurilla and the Associated Press contributed to this report.