Sean Combs, the producer and music mogul who has been one of the most famous names in hip-hop for decades, was sued in federal court on Thursday by Cassie, an R&B singer once signed to his label, who accused Mr. Combs of rape, and of repeated physical abuse over about a decade.
In the suit, filed in Federal District Court in Manhattan, Cassie, whose real name is Casandra Ventura — and who had long been Mr. Combs’s romantic partner — says that not long after she met him in 2005, when she was 19, he began a pattern of control and abuse that included plying her with drugs, beating her and forcing her to have sex with a succession of male prostitutes while he filmed the encounters. In 2018, the suit says, near the end of their relationship, Mr. Combs forced his way into her home and raped her.
“After years in silence and darkness,” Ms. Ventura said in a statement, “I am finally ready to tell my story, and to speak up on behalf of myself and for the benefit of other women who face violence and abuse in their relationships.”
✱ Combs denies it all and says Cassie has been demanding $30 million and says she was trying to blackmail him.
✱ Cassie says Combs offered her eight figures to silence her.