A sex offender who sued his victim for $4 million had his case thrown out in a California court yesterday, a decision advocates hope will discourage perpetrators from filing lawsuits that “revictimize” survivors, reports The Guardian. Lang Her, 26, sparked national outrage when he filed a defamation claim against his 24-year-old victim, Yee Xiong, after he pleaded no contest to a felony assault charge, earning him one year behind bars. Despite the plea deal and jail sentence, Her accused Xiong and her family of making false statements when they called him a “rapist” on Facebook. His defamation lawsuit is part of a growing number of high-profile legal complaints from men found guilty of sexual assault. Victims’ advocates fear the trend could discourage survivors from speaking out.
“Women who come forward and report these crimes have to know … that they are not going to get sued,” said McGregor Scott, who represented Xiong. “I hope this sends a message … that this is not going to be tolerated.” Xiong – who has spoken publicly about her case and also released the impact statement she read in court – told police she woke one morning in July 2012 to find Her pinning her down. They were University of California Davis students at the time, and she said he sexually assaulted her in an off-campus apartment after a night of drinking.