AFP

NEW YORK- Legendary film director Woody Allen hit back Sunday at his adopted daughter’s allegations of sexual abuse during her youth, calling them “untrue and disgraceful.”

In a strongly-worded statement, Allen’s New York publicist emphasized the filmmaker had never faced criminal charges over the claims and that experts at an earlier hearing had found there was no evidence of molestation. “Mr Allen has read the article and found it untrue and disgraceful,” publicist Leslee Dart said, adding that the director would be responding “very soon.”

The statement came one day after Dylan Farrow, adopted by Allen during his relationship with actress Mia Farrow, spoke in detail for the first time about the alleged abuse inflicted on her by her father.

In an open letter on a New York Times blog, the 28-year-old said she was abused by Allen as a seven-year-old.

“He told me to lay on my stomach and play with my brother’s electric train set. Then he sexually assaulted me,” Farrow wrote. She suggested that other abuse may have started even earlier, saying: “For as long as I could remember, my father had been doing things to me that I didn’t like.” The unproven allegations first emerged in the aftermath of Allen’s acrimonious split with Mia Farrow in 1992.  Dart stressed that an investigation by court-appointed independent experts at the time found no evidence of wrongdoing.  “The expe rts concluded there was no credible evidence of molestation, that Dylan Farrow had an inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality, and that Dylan Farrow had likely been coached by her mother Mia Farrow,” Dart said.