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A day after Hollywood's first Oscars of the #MeToo era, Bill Cosby is going to court on Monday to stop some of his dozens of accusers from testifying at his April 2 sexual assault retrial.

Cosby's retooled defense team, led by former Michael Jackson lawyer Tom Mesereau, is due to clash with prosecutors over the potential witnesses at a pretrial hearing.

Prosecutors raised the prospect of calling as many as 19 women to the witness stand, including model Janice Dickinson, in an attempt to show that an alleged 2004 assault that led to Cosby's only criminal charges was actually part of a five-decade pattern of him drugging and harming women.

Jurors did not have that context when they ended Cosby's first trial last year in a deadlock. A judge allowed just one other accuser's testimony but barred any mention of about 60 others who have come forward to accuse Cosby in recent years.

The only other hints jurors got of Cosby's past came from deposition excerpts from 2005 and 2006 in which he admitted getting quaaludes to give to women he wanted to have sex with.

Cosby's lawyers are urging the same judge, Steven O'Neill, to again limit the number of accusers allowed to testify. They argue that some of the women's allegations date to the 1960s and are "virtually impossible to defend against."

Cosby's lawyers argue that the other accusers' accusations are largely unsubstantiated and are not enough to meet the strict legal standard for allowing prosecutors to present evidence of a defendant's prior bad conduct.

They said they would seek to delay the retrial if any of the women were allowed to testify so they could have more time to investigate their claims.

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