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Beverly Hills News – Weinstein Posts $1Million Cash Bail on Rape, Sex Crime Charges

Updated: Friday, May 25, 2018 – 2:14 PM

(CNS) – Disgraced Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein surrendered to the New York City Police Department in Manhattan Friday and was charged with raping one woman and forcing another to fellate him.

The New York Times and other publications reported that Weinstein will likely face criminal charges involving at least one woman, Lucia Evans. The one-time aspiring actress said in an interview with The New Yorker that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on him during a 2004 meeting at his Miramax office in New York.

Another actress, Paz de la Huerta, best known for “Boardwalk Empire,” told Vanity Fair last year she was raped twice by Weinstein in New York in 2010. She said Weinstein gave her a ride home then insisted they have drinks, then forced himself on her.

The 66-year-old Weinstein until recently had seemed untouchable. Only three years ago, he withstood an investigation into groping allegations. The Manhattan district attorney’s office faced an outcry over not charging Weinstein in the groping case, the New York Times reported, but the outcome this time is different. He will be charged with first-degree rape and third- degree rape in one case, and with first-degree criminal sex act in another, law enforcement officials told the Times.

The victim in the rape case has not been publicly identified. Weinstein has been accused of sexually harassing and assaulting movie stars and employees of his former namesake company over the course of decades and then paying them or coercing them to stay silent.

Dozens of women, including Angelina Jolie, Rose McGowan, Cara Delevingne and Kate Beckinsale, have accused Weinstein of sexual harassment and assault. Weinsteinn has acknowledged inappropriate behavior in the past but has repeatedly denied all allegations of nonconsensual sex.

At least 100 reporters and photographers stood outside the NYPD’s First Precinct in downtown Manhattan Friday morning in anticipation of Weinstein’s surrender. Police blocked off traffic around 7:25 a.m. and Weinstein exited a truck that pulled up near the 1st Precinct Entrance. He was sporting a blue sweater under a blazer and ignored questions from reporters.

At the station, he was fingerprinted and formally booked. Then about an hour later, he was led from the First Police Precinct in TriBeCa and taken to court on Centre Street to face rape charges, his arms pinned behind him in several sets of handcuffs to accommodate his girth, police said, according to The New York Times.

Weinstein’s bail was set at $10 million, of which he out up  $1 million. He was also fitted with an ankle monitor.

In addition to the investigation in New York, Weinstein is also under criminal investigation in Los Angeles and London.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office is reviewing five potential cases against Weinstein — three from the Los Angeles Police Department and two from the Beverly Hills Police Department. D.A. spokesman Greg Risling said Thursday all five cases remain under review.

One of those cases is believed to be an allegation by an Italian actress/model who told police last year that Weinstein sexually assaulted her in February 2013 at the Mr. C Beverly Hills hotel, which is located in Los Angeles, where she was staying while attending the eighth annual Los Angeles, Italia Film, Fashion and Art Fest.

“He … bullied his way into my hotel room, saying, `I’m not going to (have sex with you), I just want to talk,”‘ the woman told the Los Angeles Times. “Once inside, he asked me questions about myself, but soon became very aggressive and demanding and kept asking to see me naked.

“He grabbed my by the hair and forced me to do something I did not want to do. He then dragged me to the bathroom and forcibly raped me,” she said.

Weinstein left after about 45 minutes, and “acted like nothing happened,” the woman said.

“I barely knew this man,” she told The Times. “It was the most demeaning thing ever done to me by far. It sickens me still. … He made me feel like an object, like nothing with all his power.”

District Attorney Jackie Lacey said in November she had created a specialized task force in her office to evaluate cases of “sexual abuse in the entertainment industry.” She said the task force includes “specially trained” sex-crimes prosecutors who will review cases to determine if criminal charges are warranted.

The allegations against Weinstein touched off a firestorm of allegations of sexual harassment in the entertainment industry and beyond, sparking the #MeToo movement of women coming forward with claims of being victimized and the #TimesUp movement demanding change in the treatment of women.

The Weinstein Company production house was forced into bankruptcy following the allegations, and Weinstein himself was expelled from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and other major Hollywood organizations.

According to TMZ.com, Weinstein was in Southern California as late as Wednesday, when he was photographed having lunch at a Malibu restaurant.

CNS-05-25-2018 07:26

Posted: Friday, May 25, 2018 – 1:49 PM

(AFP) Disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein was charged with rape and a sex crime in New York on Friday, posting a $1 million cash bail nearly eight months after his career imploded under bombshell accusations that triggered the #MeToo movement.

The former mogul — once the toast of Hollywood and whose films won scores of Oscars — grinned as he was escorted into a Manhattan court in handcuffs to face the first criminal charges posted against him.

Standing alongside his defense attorney, Weinstein looked glum during a brief arraignment, agreeing to post bail at $1 million cash, surrender his passport and be fitted with a GPS monitoring device.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office said he was charged with rape in the first and third degrees, stemming from an attack on a woman in 2013, and a criminal sex act against another woman in 2004. Neither victim was named.

“Today’s charges reflect significant progress in this active, ongoing investigation,” said District Attorney Cyrus Vance, thanking “brave survivors” for coming forward and urging others to call a sex crimes hotline.

They are the first criminal charges against the twice-married, shamed former titan, who already faces a slew of civil lawsuits, is reportedly under federal investigation and whose former studio has filed for bankruptcy.

Defense attorney Ben Brafman told reporters that Weinstein would plead not guilty and that his client denied any non-consensual sexual activity.

“We intend to move very quickly to dismiss these charges,” Brafman said. “Bad behavior is not on trial,” he added. “Mr Weinstein did not invent the casting couch in Hollywood.”

The 66-year-old former studio boss surrendered to police shortly before 7:30 am (1130 GMT) wearing a white shirt, pale blue sweater and dark blazer, dozens of television cameras and photographers mobbing the street outside.

– Handcuffs –

He stepped out of a black SUV and walked into the station, clutching several books, among them what appeared to be the Rodgers and Hammerstein biography “Something Wonderful” and a book on late director Elia Kazan.

New York police said he was “arrested, processed and charged with rape, criminal sex act, sex abuse and sexual misconduct.”

After having his mugshots and fingerprints taken, he was escorted out in handcuffs, again grinning, and driven to court in the back of a smart SUV.

Out on bail, Weinstein’s travel will be restricted to New York and the neighboring state of Connecticut, and he agreed to surrender his passport. The case has been adjourned until July 30.

The district attorney and police have been investigating Weinstein for months, under growing pressure from Hollywood actresses to bring the disgraced producer to justice.

Lucia Evans, who said Weinstein forced her into oral sex in 2004, is thought to be one of the women whose cases triggered charges.

New York police previously confirmed another credible rape allegation after “Boardwalk Empire” actress Paz de la Huerta accused the former producer of raping her twice at her New York apartment in late 2010.

Weinstein’s career went down in flames in October over sexual assault allegations following explosive articles in The New York Times and New Yorker, which sparked a sexual harassment watershed across the United States. 

Nearly 100 women have since accused Weinstein of crimes ranging from sexual harassment to assault and rape going back 40 years.

– ‘Stop, don’t’ –

Salma Hayek, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie are among more than two dozen actresses who say they were sexually harassed by the producer. A few, including Asia Argento and Rose McGowan, said they were raped.

“I have to admit I didn’t think I would see the day that he would have handcuffs on him,” McGowan told ABC television Friday.

The #MeToo movement has seen people around the world come forward with cases of sexual mistreatment, leading to the downfall of powerful men across industries, including Oscar winner Kevin Spacey.

Evans told The New Yorker that Weinstein approached her in a club in 2004 and forced her to perform oral sex in a Tribeca office.

“I said, over and over, ‘I don’t want to do this, stop, don’t,'” she said.

Weinstein has reportedly spent months in treatment for sex addiction. His fashion designer wife, Georgina Chapman, has left him.

But for all the media circus, experts warn that any trial — let alone a criminal conviction — would still be a long way off.

Sexual assault cases, particularly those that allegedly happened years ago, are notoriously difficult to prosecute and often lack substantive forensic evidence.

Weinstein’s lawyer is one of America’s most celebrated criminal defense attorneys. His past clients include former IMF boss Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who escaped criminal prosecution for alleged sexual assault in 2011.

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© Agence France-Presse

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