Harvey Weinstein under investigation for additional sexual assaults, says prosecutor

Former film producer Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of rape allegations in 2020. File photo.
Former film producer Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of rape allegations in 2020. File photo.
Image: Etienne Laurent/Pool via REUTERS

Prosecutors are investigating “additional violent sexual assaults” they allege former Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein committed and intend to seek a new indictment after his previous conviction was overturned, a prosecutor said on Tuesday.

Prosecutor Nicole Blumberg said in a hearing before justice Curtis Farber in a New York state criminal court in Manhattan that the additional assaults Weinstein allegedly committed were within the statute of limitations to be charged as crimes.

Weinstein was found guilty of rape allegations in 2020 in a milestone for the #MeToo movement in which women accused hundreds of men in entertainment, media, politics and other fields of sexual misconduct.

A jury found the 72-year-old Miramax film studio co-founder sexually assaulted former production assistant Miriam Haley in 2006 and raped aspiring actress Jessica Mann in 2013. They are among more than 80 women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.

He was sentenced to 23 years in prison, but in April the New York court of appeals found judge James Burke, who presided over the trial, made a critical mistake by allowing three women to testify about alleged sexual assaults by Weinstein that were not part of the criminal charges against him.

The court said testimony about “prior bad acts” violated his right to a fair trial.

Weinstein has denied having non-consensual encounters with anyone. Arthur Aidala, Weinstein's lawyer, said on Tuesday it was unfair for prosecutors to seek to add additional victims to the case after the conviction was overturned.

“Once again we have a hotline, '1-800 Get Harvey,'” Aidala said in court.

Weinstein is suffering from medical problems while being held in solitary confinement at New York City's Rikers Island jail, Aidala said. He accused prosecutors of using delay tactics to keep Weinstein incarcerated, which Blumberg denied.

“As we said in 2020, there were women who were not ready to proceed with the legal process. Some of those women are now ready to proceed,” Blumberg said.

Prosecutors would be ready to try the case later this year, Blumberg said, but no trial date was set. Weinstein is due back in court on July 19.

Weinstein was also sentenced to 16 years after a separate rape trial in California. That conviction was not affected by the New York court's decision, and he has not begun serving the California sentence.

Miramax's hit movies included Shakespeare in Love and Pulp Fiction. Weinstein's own eponymous film studio filed for bankruptcy in March 2018.



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