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February 3, 2014

Woody Allen: Farrow claims 'disgraceful'

NEW YORK (AP) — Woody Allen called Dylan Farrow’s allegations of child molestation “untrue and disgraceful” a day after Farrow renewed claims dating back to Allen’s tempestuous relationship with actress Mia Farrow in the early 1990s.

The movie director’s publicist Leslee Dart said in an email Sunday that Allen has read Dylan Farrow’s open-letter, published online by The New York Times, claiming she was sexually assaulted by her then adoptive father as a 7-year-old.

“Mr. Allen has read the article and found it untrue and disgraceful,” said Dart, who said Allen will be responding soon.

Dylan Farrow claimed that in 1992 at the family’s Connecticut home, Allen led her to a “dim, closet-like attic” and “then he sexually assaulted me.” Farrow didn’t specify Allen’s actions, but described other abusive behavior.

Allen was investigated on child molestation claims for the 1992 accusation, but prosecutors elected not to charge him.

The handling of the investigation was criticized after Litchfield County state attorney Frank S. Maco said in a press conference that he believed there was “probable cause” to charge Allen but decided against prosecution partly to avoid a traumatic trial for the young girl. A disciplinary panel found that Maco may have prejudiced the ongoing custody battle between Allen and Mia Farrow by making an accusation without formal charges.

Months before Maco’s press conference, a team of child abuse specialists from Yale-New Haven Hospital were brought in to the case and concluded that the child had not been molested.

Maco, who retired in 2003, told the AP on Sunday that the statute of limitations on Dylan Farrow’s accusations ran out at least 15 years ago. He said he hopes Farrow was able to watch his news conference and read his statement about his decision not to prosecute Allen.

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