The couple who accused Edmonton Oilers billionaire proprietor Daryl Katz of paying an underage ballerina for sexual favors have withdrawn their claims and filed a movement to strike them from a third-party lawsuit they filed final month, acknowledging via their lawyer that “key allegations were not true.”

“I want to personally apologize for any harm the erroneous factual claims may have caused to Mr. Katz and his family,” Marc Randazza, the lawyer for Dusty and Mitchell Button, stated in an announcement distributed to The Athletic on Tuesday by Katz’s authorized staff. “We brought the claims in good faith, but the moment I doubted the ability to maintain them, I took corrective action and asked the court to strike all relevant references from the record.”

In a lawsuit filed earlier this month in U.S. District Court in Nevada, quite a lot of ballerinas say they have been sexually abused by dance instructor Mitchell Taylor Button and his spouse Dusty, a widely known ballerina and former principal member of the Boston Ballet.

While Katz was not named in that preliminary go well with, the Buttons filed a countersuit, claiming that they have been in a consensual relationship with plaintiff Sage Humphries, which started when she turned 18. As a part of their counterclaim, they included as an exhibit textual content messages that point out an trade between Katz and Humphries that implies Katz was having cash despatched to her checking account. Those textual content messages don’t point out the aim. According to the Buttons’ counterclaim, Humphries was underage on the time of her interactions with Katz.

However, after the claims within the countersuit have been made public, Katz’a lawyer, Robert Klieger supplied The Athletic with documentation that confirmed Humphries was 18, not 17, when she was in discussions with Katz a few movie venture.

Klieger additionally stated in July that Katz has by no means had a sexual relationship with Humphries, telling CBC that Humphries and Katz met twice in 2016 concerning a venture she pitched to his movie firm.

Sigrid McCawley, Humphries’ lawyer stated in an announcement that Humphries had a “business relationship with Mr. Katz and there was never any sexual relationship between them.”

“Dusty and Mitchell Button made their allegations based on their understanding of information provided to them by Sage Humphries,” Randazza stated in Tuesday’s assertion. “They even double-checked her year of birth with reliable third-party sources. Nevertheless, Mr. Katz’s counsel provided the Buttons with credible evidence that key allegations were not true, and these sources were all wrong.”

In addition to withdrawing the claims, the Buttons have additionally requested the court docket to “seal the un-stricken version, and to replace it with the version
that redacts allegations based on Sage Humphries being born in 1998 versus her apparent true year of birth, 1997.”

(Photo: Minas Panagiotakis / Getty Images)



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