MONTGOMERY, AL (AP) - A judge has paused a defamation suit filed by Roy Moore against women who accused him during his unsuccessful U.S. Senate bid of past misconduct.

Circuit Judge Albert Johnson the case will be held until a related defamation case against Moore by one of the women is resolved.

During Alabama's 2017 special Senate race, several women accused Moore of having pursued relationships with them when they were teens and he was in his 30s. Leigh Corfman said Moore sexually touched her when she was 14 and he was 32.

Moore denied the allegations. He said Friday he went to court to clear his name and said he has been treated unfairly.

Corfman filed a defamation lawsuit against Moore. Moore later countersued her and other accusers.

Johnson says Corfman's case will proceed first.

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