Actor Noel Clarke is suing the BAFTA for defamation, following the Academy’s decision to suspend his membership following allegations of sexual harassment and bullying.
The Sunday Times reports that the actor and writer filed suit in the High Court in London last week.
Last year, the BAFTA awarded Clarke (Armored, fraternity) an award for outstanding contribution to British cinema, but took the decision to suspend the award after the Guardian The newspaper published a report including allegations by 20 women of abuse, intimidation and harassment – which Clarke denied.
His trial comes after the Metropolitan Police decided last month to suspend its investigation into the allegations, saying they had “determined that the information would not meet the threshold of a criminal investigation”.
In response to his lawsuit, a BAFTA spokesperson said: “A year ago, BAFTA was transparent about what led to the suspension of the award and Mr Clarke’s membership following serious accusations of groping, harassment and intimidation by 20 women published by The Guardian.
“We stand by our decision and are very surprised to hear that he now wishes to sue the arts charity. If the charges are served, we will of course defend ourselves.
Clarke is also suing The Guardian Media Group and Condé Nast, the owner of GQ magazine, which conducted an interview with the two journalists who published the story.