Backstreet Boys member Nick Carter has filed a countersuit against two women who have accused the singer of sexually assaulting them more than 15 years ago.
In the countersuit, filed on Thursday in Nevada, Carter, 43, describes his accusers as “opportunists” who are taking advantage of the #MeToo movement to “defame and vilify” him for financial gain.
Carter is seeking US$2.3 million in damages — the amount the singer claims he lost in missed business opportunities as a result of a December 2022 lawsuit filed by a co-defendant who accused Carter of rape.
In the original lawsuit, Shannon (Shay) Ruth said Carter invited her onto a tour bus after a concert in Tacoma, Wash., when she was 17 years old. She claims Carter gave her alcohol and forced her to perform oral sex before he raped her. Ruth also alleges that she contracted HPV from Carter.
During a December press conference, Ruth said Carter should not be excused for his alleged crime because he is a celebrity. At the time, Carter denied the accusations.
“Carter will not allow himself to be smeared in this way,” the singer’s new countersuit reads. “Protecting one’s reputation and name by calling a liar a liar is not victim blaming or bullying. It is simply telling the truth.”
In an email statement to Billboard, Ruth’s lawyer Mike Boskovich, said, “Why should Nick Carter be believed with his long history of abusing females. A jury will weigh the evidence and decide.”
Melissa Schuman, a former member of the girl group Dream, is also named in Carter’s countersuit. In 2017, Schuman accused Carter of sexually assaulting her in 2003 when the pair collaborated on a film project. Schuman’s father, Jerome, is also named in the counterclaim.
Carter claims the Schumans “groomed and coached” Ruth to believe she was raped by Carter.
His countersuit claims Ruth, who lives with autism and cerebral palsy, “was a vulnerable and highly impressionable individual, craving attention and desperate to fit in.”
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Carter’s complaints against Ruth and the Schumans also allege they illegally conspired against him and used his late brother Aaron Carter as a tool to legitimize their allegations. The younger Carter brother, who died in November, had publicly supported Ruth and Schuman’s claims, but later withdrew his endorsement.
“The Schumans’ timing couldn’t have been better since, at the time, Aaron was addicted to drugs, battling serious mental health issues, and engaged in a misguided campaign of retaliation against Carter and other members of his family who were worried about Aaron and pushing him to seek professional help,” the complaint reads.
“In the months leading up to his recent death, Aaron not only apologized to Carter for his involvement in the counter-defendants’ smear campaign, but publicly stated that Schuman and Ruth were liars.”
The owner of the Twitter account @ElaineModo is also listed as a defendant in the countersuit. Carter, through his lawyers, claimed the account is likely controlled by Ruth and the Schumans and is used to defame him online.
When news of Ruth’s lawsuit broke in December, ABC decided it would no longer air the Backstreet Boys’ Christmas special. Carter’s lawsuit claims he also lost paid contracts with MeUndies, VRBO and Roblox.
If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse or is involved in an abusive situation, please visit the Canadian Resource Centre for Victims of Crime for help. They are also reachable toll-free at 1-877-232-2610.
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