May 20, 2016 / 10:41 PM / a year ago

Bill Cosby's wife answered few questions in February deposition

Playboy Magazine founder Hugh Hefner (R) and actor Bill Cosby arrive at a news conference at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles, California February 10, 2011. REUTERS/Fred Prouser/File Photo

(Reuters) - Bill Cosby’s wife of 52 years bickered with lawyers and cited marital privilege as she refused to answer questions about the torrent of sexual abuse allegations her husband faces, according to a transcript released on Friday of a sworn deposition she gave in February.

Camille Cosby, 72, repeatedly cited her legal right to keep spousal communications private, during questioning in Massachusetts by lawyers for seven women suing her husband there for defamation.

The session was punctuated with frequent squabbles, as Cosby’s attorneys objected to the line of questioning directed at their client, according to the newly unsealed transcript, posted online by The Hollywood Reporter.

Taken from the first of two depositions she has submitted to under court order, the transcript shed little light on a mounting scandal that has shattered the comedian’s career, even as Camille Cosby has stood steadfastly by her husband.

Her attorneys said in a court filing in February that questions posed during the deposition were designed to “annoy” and “embarrass” Cosby’s wife.

It came in the discovery phase of a defamation suit brought by former aspiring model and singer Tamara Green and six other women against the comedian for denying their allegations that he sexually assaulted them.

They are among more than 50 women who have who have come forward over the past two years to accuse Cosby of rape and other sexual wrongdoing. Most involve encounters said to have occurred a decade or more ago.

In the only criminal prosecution of him so far, Cosby was charged in December with sexually assaulting a woman in Pennsylvania in 2004.

The 78-year-old comedian, who personified the model American family man in his long-running hit sitcom “The Cosby Show,” has denied engaging in any non-consensual sexual behavior, though he has acknowledged marital infidelity.

Playboy founder Hugh Hefner gave a sworn deposition this week in a lawsuit brought in Los Angeles by an accuser, Judy Huth, who said Cosby plied her with alcohol and molested her at Hefner’s Playboy Mansion in 1974 when she was aged 15.

Her lawyer, Gloria Allred, said the videotaped deposition took place on Wednesday at the mansion, where Hefner, 90, still resides.

But citing a gag order in the case, Allred declined to discuss any details of the deposition, including her rationale for questioning Hefner.

A spokesman for Cosby declined to comment, while representatives for Hefner could not immediately be reached.

Writing by Steve Gorman; Editing by Mary Milliken and David Gregorio

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