Casey Anthony’s father could take legal action after she accused him of rape, an expert has said.
In a new Peacock documentary delving into the high-profile criminal trial over the mysterious death of her two-year-old daughter Caylee, Anthony accuses her father George Anthony of being the culprit behind the crime and labels him a “paedophile.”
More than 11 years after the criminal proceedings in which the allegations against Mr Anthony first transpired, New York intellectual property lawyer Richard Altman told the New York Post that Mr Anthony could sue his daughter for defamation.
“The statement so-and-so raped me is a factual statement that can be proven or disproven and therefore it qualifies as the kind of statement that can be defamation,” Mr Altman said.
“Theoretically does he have a legally sufficient case to bring? It would seem so.”
In order to bring the case to trial, Mr Anthony would have to prove she had actual malice when she made the statements, Mr Altman told the Post.
Anthony was dubbed “America’s most hated mom” by cable television news amid reports she went to nightclubs and got a tattoo in the month her daughter was missing.
She first made the allegations against her father during the 2011 trial, accusing him of raping her when she was a minor.
Her defence team had contended that Anthony had falsely claimed Caylee was abducted by her nanny and that the child had instead drowned accidentally in the family’s swimming pool and that Mr Anthony got rid of the body.
Anthony was ultimately found not guilty of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, and aggravated manslaughter, a verdict that shocked and enraged the nation.
She was only found guilty of providing false statements to police and was released for time served while she awaited trial after Caylee’s 2008 death.
Her defence team had said that Anthony lied about the nanny due to a dysfunctional upbringing.
In the new docuseries Where The Truth Lies, which will be available to stream on 29 November, Anthony claims that she “protected her abuser.”
“I know what [my father] did to me and that was my fear. I had one job, to keep [Caylee] safe,” she says in the trailer,
“I failed her again and again and again, because I still protected the person who hurt me ...”
“I did protect my abuser — and protected her abuser. And that crushes me.”
Ms Anthony previously said in an interview with the Associated Press that she does not remember the last moments of Caylee’s life.
“I’m still not even certain as I stand here today about what happened,” she had said.
“I understand the reasons people feel about me. I understand why people have the opinions that they do.”