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Bryant's accuser identifies self in suit

DENVER -- Under orders from a federal judge, the woman accusing Kobe Bryant of rape identified herself by name yesterday in a revised version of the lawsuit she filed against the NBA athlete two months ago.

The 20-year-old woman, who asked Eagle County prosecutors to dismiss the felony case against Bryant after deciding not to testify, had sought to remain anonymous in the federal civil case, although her name has been widely published on the Internet.

Her lawyers, John Clune and L. Lin Wood, argued that she should not be named because she has been the subject of death threats and sordid publicity since she told police Bryant assaulted her 16 months ago. The lawyers did not return calls yesterday.

US District Judge Richard P. Matsch said last week the woman must be publicly identified in the case as a matter of fairness. He also said her privacy had been invaded to the extent that granting her anonymity would have little effect.

Legal specialists say federal judges rarely allow plaintiffs to remain anonymous, except in cases involving children or whistle- blowers who fear employer retaliation. News organizations generally do not identify alleged victims of sexual assault.

Bryant's lawyer, Saskia Jordan, did not return a call seeking comment.

A trial date has not been set in the civil suit, which seeks unspecified damages for alleged pain and suffering and "to punish defendant Bryant for his actions and to deter defendant Bryant from repeating his criminal conduct."

Bryant, 26, has maintained that the encounter between him and the woman at the Vail-area resort where she worked in July 2003 was consensual.

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