A former contestant on The Apprentice who sued ex-US President Donald Trump for defamation when he dismissed her sexual assault claim against him as “lies” has dropped her lawsuit after almost five years.

Summer Zervos had appeared on the reality TV show in 2005. During the 2016 US presidential campaign, she accused Mr Trump of kissing and groping her without her consent in a Beverley Hills hotel room in 2007, after she asked him for career advice.

Mr Trump denied the claims, calling them politically motivated, and rejected allegations of misconduct. In January 2017, Ms Zervos started defamation proceedings against Mr Trump in a New York state court in Manhattan. Mr Trump was seeking to countersue her for “harassing, intimidating, punishing or otherwise maliciously inhibiting” his free speech rights.

On 12 November, a joint document filed in court revealed that the parties had agreed that “all claims and counterclaims asserted in this matter, or that could have been asserted, are hereby dismissed and discontinued in their entirety with prejudice, with each party to bear his or her own costs.”

In a statement, Ms Zervos’s lawyers said: “Today the parties have ended Zervos v. Trump. After five years, Ms Zervos no longer wishes to litigate against the defendant and has secured the right to speak freely about her experience.” They added: “Ms Zervos stands by the allegations in her complaint and has accepted no compensation.”

In a statement shared by the political action committee Save America, Mr Trump said he had been “totally vindicated”. “It is so sad when things like this can happen, but so incredibly important to fight for the truth and justice. Only victory can restore one’s reputation,” the former President said.

No further details regarding the agreement or Ms Zervos’s decision to drop her defamation suit were available.