Rob Lowe and his ex-nanny both claimed victory Thursday after a California judge threw out four of the actor's claims against Jessica Gibson but also one of Gibson's allegations.
Superior Court Judge Denise de Bellefeuille issued the technical legal rulings in the emotionally charged litigation, in which both sides are suing each other, in a courtroom in Santa Barbara.
For Gibson, the judge ruled that Lowe could not pursue his defamation claims against her because the 24-year-old former nanny is protected under laws allowing people to protest alleged workplace conditions. Three other claims also were tossed.
"This is a huge victory for us today," said Gibson's lawyer, Gloria Allred. "We look forward to continuing with our sexual harassment suit against the Lowes."
But for Lowe's side the judge threw out Gibson's claim that the actor retaliated against her. Previously, the judge dismissed two of Gibson's other claims against Lowe.
"We didn't lose anything today," Lowe attorney Larry Stein told PEOPLE. "I'm delighted with the dismissal we won, and in essence, our lawsuit against Gibson remains totally intact."