Jim Carrey is coming back swinging a year after he was served with a wrongful death lawsuit from his deceased ex-girlfriend’s family.
The actor is now vowing not to “give in” to “fraudulent charges” brought by “desperate characters.”
Both suits hinge on a tragedy. Carrey, 55, began dating makeup artist Cathriona White, 30, in the summer of 2012 after they met on a film set. The Irish-born woman was found dead in a Sherman Oaks, Calif., home on Sept. 28, 2015; the Los Angeles County coroner’s office later ruled White took her own life by overdosing on prescription drugs, including Ambien, Propranolol and Percocet (oxycodone).
The actor was a pallbearer at her Ireland funeral.
In 2016, Carrey was hit with a wrongful death lawsuit from his late girlfriend’s husband, Mark Burton, her mother, Brigid Sweetman, and their lawyer, Filippo Marchino, accusing him of illegally obtaining and giving her the powerful painkillers she used to kill herself in September 2015. They also alleged that Carrey gave White “three STDs without warning her.”
Now, Carrey is hitting back, saying White had tried to pressure him into marriage, and after the two broke up in early 2013 he made a “mistake” of settling a false STD claim with White to avoid mounting a public defense, which “is a very costly and painful process.”
Carrey’s countersuit, which was obtained by USA TODAY, states that between March and August 2013 White and Marchino tried to “extort” him by threatening to go to the press “with the false claim that Jim had given her Herpes I and Herpes II — unless Jim paid her millions of dollars.”
Carrey says he reluctantly agreed to give White money and property, though it was “substantially less than the millions of dollars sought and demanded.”
Incredibly, the two got back together roughly a year and a half later, following an “apology” and “forgiveness,” says Carrey, and planned to move in together prior to her Sept. 2015 death (though a non-disclosure agreement got in the way).
The timeline gets stickier considering White was married when she died. According to Carrey’s suit, his ex only married Burton – within a week of their January 2013 breakup – for citizenship. It was “a favor for which she agreed to pay him $30,000.”
Lawyer Michael Avenatti, who represents Burton and Sweetman, calls that claim “complete and utter nonsense.”
Carrey’s claim also states that following that marriage, he and White dated briefly in February 2013, only to break up again.
In a statement to USA TODAY, Avenatti charged that “Carrey is so desperate to avoid the public knowing the truth about his own outrageous conduct, that he has now resorted to outlandish accusations against innocent people. As his interview from a few weeks ago shows, the guy is incoherent and unhinged. He needs help.”
On Friday, the actor stated he “will not give in a second time to these same fraudulent charges initiated by Cat’s husband in name but not substance, Mark Burton, and her estranged mother. Nor am I responsible for what these desperate characters have inadvertently unearthed about the woman I adored.
“I was clearly blinded by my affection. Regardless, I will hold a place of empathy, and forgiveness for Cat and continue to focus on the many blessings in this life.”