Bill Cosby Says He is ‘Political Prisoner,’ Compares Himself to Mandela, MLK

Convicted sex offender Bill Cosby claimed that he is a victim of “entrapment” and a “political prisoner” while comparing himself to the likes of Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King, Jr., in his first official message from prison.

Cosby, 81, was sentenced to three to 10 years in prison on Sept. 25 last year for drugging and sexually assaulting his friend, Andrea Constand, more than a decade ago. He became the first celebrity of the #MeToo era to be sent to prison.

In a statement released on Feb. 13 by his press representative, Andrew Wyatt, Cosby said he had no remorse and never had remorse.

Cosby claimed that it was his “political beliefs, actions of trying to humanize all races, genders, and religions landed me in this place surrounded by barb wire fencing, a room made of steel and iron.”

“So, I now have a temporary residence that resembles the quarters of some of the greatest political prisoners—Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Randal Robinson, and Dr. Benjamin Chavis,” the statement reads. “I stand upright as a Political Prisoner and I Smile.”

In his statement, Cosby went on to blame Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele, as well as Judge Steven O’Neill, for finding him guilty, claiming that the conviction was made out of political gain rather than justice.

Cosby, who is legally blind, recently moved into the prison’s general population after spending time in special housing to get acclimated to the environment. He still has other inmates assigned to help him throughout the day, due to his age and disability.

The 81-year-old has not had any visits from family four months after arriving at the Pennsylvania state prison. Wyatt said he doesn’t expect Cosby’s wife, Camille, or their daughters to visit the prison, which is about 20 miles from their family estate in the Philadelphia suburbs.

“He doesn’t want to have them in that environment,” said Wyatt, who visits him regularly. “Why put them in that position, to make it turn into some form of a circus?”

A jury at a retrial last year convicted Cosby of three counts of felony sex assault. Cosby is appealing the conviction.

“He hasn’t stopped thinking about the things that he’s going to do when he gets out,” Wyatt said.

Dozens of women have accused Cosby of sexual assault or misconduct over a 50-year span, including five who testified at the retrial. Cosby and his lawyers and agents have repeatedly called the encounters consensual.

Cosby, a Philadelphia native, rose to fame in the 1960s as the first black actor to star in a primetime television drama with the hit show, “I Spy.” He became known as “America’s Dad” for his portrayal of family man Cliff Huxtable on the top-ranked “Cosby Show” from 1984 to 1992, a show that helped his fortune reach an estimated $400 million.

The Associated Press contributed to this report