New York judge lets Harvey Weinstein sex assault case move forward

Oscar Cross
December 21, 2018

Harvey Weinstein, the disgraced movie mogul whose downfall helped launch the #MeToo movement, is due back in NY court on March 7 after a judge Thursday morning ordered a pretrial hearing in the rape case.

Judge James Burke is expected to rule after a flurry of court papers in which Weinstein's lawyers say the case has devolved into chaos and prosecutors say there's ample evidence to move forward to trial.

Mr Weinstein, who faces a up to life in prison if convicted of the five charges against him, has denied having nonconsensual sex with anyone following accusations by more than 70 women, mostly young actresses and other women employed in the movie business, of sexual misconduct, including rape, going back decades.

Weinstein's lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, alleged police misconduct, including interfering with a witness and an accuser, "irreparably tainted" the case, the Associated Press reports.

Weinstein arrived at the Manhattan courthouse shortly before 9:30 a.m.to attend the brief hearing, which lasted about 10 minutes.

Weinstein is charged with two counts of predatory sexual assault, one count of criminal sexual act in the first degree, and one count each of rape in the first and third degree.

"The motion to dismiss on these grounds is denied".

In May this year, Weinstein handed himself over to police but he pleaded not guilty to charges that he sexually assaulted three women.


Prosecutors opted not to pursue the charge, after it emerged that one detective who worked on the investigation had failed to disclose witness testimony that contradicted Evans's account.

Weinstein has also argued that the indictment should be dismissed because the grand jury had not been shown communications that he said showed a long-term, consensual relationship between him and one of the women.

"This is not about the #MeToo movement", Brafman said following the hearing.

It's been over a year since New York Times investigative reporters Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor published their exposé on Harvey Weinstein, setting the #MeToo Movement in motion.

Jennifer promptly issued a statement firmly denying the story, while Weinstein's publicist also dismissed the allegations, insisting Harvey was "embarrassed" for Lawrence at having to respond to the "malicious claims".

"We look forward to seeing justice served and seeing Harvey Weinstein prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law", the group said.

Late last month, Weinstein's lawyers said they spoke to a woman who said the rape accuser asked her to corroborate her allegations, but the friend wouldn't "make up a story".

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