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Harvey Weinstein Indicted in Hollywood Sex Case, Lawyer Cites 'Unfair Political Pressure'

05-31-2018
HarveyWeinsteinAP2

Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein was indicted Wednesday on rape and criminal sex act charges, but his lawyer says the charges are "unsupported" and he plans to fight them. 
 
The indictment came hours after the former film producer declined to testify before the grand jury citing that he did not have enough time to prepare. His lawyer added that "political pressure" made an indictment unavoidable.

"Regardless of how compelling Mr. Weinstein's personal testimony might be, an indictment was inevitable due to the unfair political pressure being placed on Cy Vance to secure a conviction of Mr. Weinstein," a statement from his lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, read.

Weinstein learned of the specific charges against him on Friday after turning himself in to authorities. 

Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. is the Manhattan district attorney in the case and he said the indictment against Weinstein brings him one step closer to accountability for alleged attacks on two women in New York. 

One woman is a marketing consultant and the other is once aspiring actress Lucia Evans. 

Besides those two women, dozens more have accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct including actresses Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan. 

"I lost status and prestige, and power in my career as a direct result of having been sexually harassed and rebuffing the sexual harassment," Judd said.

Gwyneth Paltrow says ex-fiance Brad Pitt threatened Weinstein after an alleged incident of sexual misconduct.

And actress Paz de la Huerta claims Weinstein raped her in New York in 2010. She told Vanity Fair after his arrest that she felt "melancholic" and "couldn't stop crying."

"I'm happy we're closer to justice," she added. 

Baufman has called the rape allegations "absurd" and said Weinstein is "confident he's going to clear his name" in the New York prosecution.

The 66-year-old Weinsten is currently free on $1 million bail, but is confined to New York and Connecticut. He is due back in court July 30, but the date could be moved up in light of the indictment.

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