Controversial US politician Roy Moore has confirmed that he is suing Sacha Baron Cohen for $95 million, after he was ridiculed on Who Is America?
Moore, who attracted plenty of controversy during his failed run for the US Senate seat in Alabama towards the end of last year – was tricked into taking a ‘paedophile detector’ test on the satirical show, which saw Cohen posing as fictional Israeli soldier Col. Erran Morad.
During the televised interview, originally arranged under the pretence of discussing Israel, Baron Cohen explained how the device was able to root out paedophiles.
After turning the device on, it beeped when placed in front of Moore – who then began protesting his innocence and eventually walked out of the interview.
The stunt was pulled in reference to a number of allegations of sexual misconduct which have been made against Moore since he announced his intention to run for Senate last year.
Now, Moore has followed through with an earlier threat to sue both Baron Cohen and broadcasters Showtime if the footage was televised.
“Defendant Cohen’s character falsely and fraudulently introduced a false and fraudulent ‘device’ supposedly invented by the Israeli Army to detect pedophiles,” state the complaint. “During the segment, Defendant Cohen’s ‘device’ — as part of the false and fraudulent routine — purports to detect Judge Moore as a sex offender, thus defaming him”, an official complaint confirms.
Responding to the lawsuit, Showtime told The Hollywood Reporter: “The press has been sent copies of an alleged complaint, yet to our knowledge SHOWTIME has not been served. With that said, we do not comment on pending litigation.”
Although it has been confirmed that Moore signed a release form before the interview, his legal team argues that his permission was ultimately gained through “fraud”.
Last week, it was reported that Who Is America is unlikely to return for a second series, after debuting to mixed reviews. Other high profile targets included Dick Cheney, who signed a waterboarding kit, and Sarah Palin – who ultimately failed to appear on the show.