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Lawyer Discusses Ariana Madix’s Potential Defense Against Raquel Leviss in Revenge Porn Lawsuit

After being sued by Rachel “Raquel” Leviss, Ariana Madix‘s potential defense could involve questioning the damages in the lawsuit.

During an exclusive interview with Us Weekly, attorney Neama Rahmani, who is not involved in the case, argued that Leviss’ claims of intentional infliction of emotional distress could be challenged in court.

“There’s no question that Rachel suffered some emotional distress. She had to check into a rehab facility. But I think what the lawyers will argue is that this was all Rachel’s own doing because of this affair or previous substance abuse problems,” Rahmani speculated. “And any harm she suffered, it wasn’t because of anything Tom or Ariana did. It was because of Rachel’s own doing. So, I can see the case being defended on that ground.”

According to Rahmani, Leviss’ affair with Tom Sandoval could be brought up against her.

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“It’s the question of causation. So there’s no question that Rachel did suffer because of all this. It’s just really a question of what caused her suffering,” he continued. “Was it her own actions or was it the actions of Tom, Ariana or Bravo? Who’s responsible?”

Ariana Madix Potential Defense Against Raquel Leviss
Amanda Edwards/Getty Images; Leon Bennett/WireImage

News broke in March 2023 that Sandoval, 41, and Madix, 38, ended their nearly decade-long relationship because of his infidelity. In the aftermath, Leviss, 29, checked herself into a mental health facility and has since left Vanderpump Rules. Nearly a day to the year that Scandoval made headlines, Leviss sued Madix and Sandoval on Thursday, February 29, for unspecified damages.

In documents obtained by Us, Leviss accused Madix and Sandoval of revenge porn, eavesdropping, invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Leviss claimed Sandoval filmed a private video call between them without her consent, which Madix then acquired and allegedly sent to other people.

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Leviss didn’t include Bravo in the lawsuit, but the paperwork did claim that production kept her from speaking out.

Ariana Madix Potential Defense Against Raquel Leviss
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“As a result, she suffered in silence as Bravo and Evolution watched viewership explode, and the rest of the cast enjoyed unseen levels of public recognition and professional opportunity,” the documents stated. “Meanwhile, Leviss, who was humiliated and villainized for public consumption, remains a shell of her former self, with her career prospects stunted and her reputation in tatters.”

Since finishing her 90-day treatment, Leviss has been using her “Rachel Goes Rogue” podcast to share her side of the story. Rahmani, however, pointed out that Leviss’ new professional venture might be mentioned in the courtroom.

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“The argument could be made that whatever harm Rachel did suffer, it’s over. And in fact, she profited from all this. So that can be a defense as well [in] saying this sort of raised your stature,” he told Us. “I don’t know what Rachel’s plans are after Vanderpump Rules, but she’s certainly very well known as a result. So the argument could be made that you weren’t damaged at all, and in fact you came out ahead.”

Rahmani continued: “I think that’s going to be tough given that she did have to check into a facility and she did receive treatment for some period of time. But I think that would be another defense in the case that the first being any harm you suffered had nothing to do with us. Second being that you weren’t actually harmed at all.”

With reporting by Christina Garibaldi

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