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Harvey Weinstein may face new charges, New York prosecutors say

NEW YORK (AP) — Manhattan prosecutors told a judge Wednesday they are evaluating more sexual misconduct allegations against Harvey Weinstein and could potentially seek a new indictment against him before his retrial slated for rape and sexual assault charges.

Assistant District Attorney Nicole Blumberg said during a court hearing that other people had filed assault complaints and prosecutors were evaluating which ones fell within the statute of limitations.

She added that some potential survivors who were not willing to come forward during Weinstein’s first trial in New York may now be willing to testify.

When asked by Judge Curtis Farber if it was possible prosecutors would file a new indictment, Blumberg replied: “Yes, your honor. »

Blumberg said prosecutors would be in a better position to inform the court about the direction of the case at the end of June.

Farber set the next court date for July 9. The rape retrial is tentatively scheduled for sometime after Labor Day.

Weinstein’s lawyer, Arthur Aidala, told reporters outside the courthouse after the hearing that his client was confident no additional accusers would be found to bolster the prosecution’s case.

“He knows he’s never done anything like this,” Aidala said of Weinstein.

Weinstein, appearing in the same New York courthouse where former president Donald Trump goes on trialentered the court in a wheelchair, as he has done in other recent hearings since his Conviction 2020 was thrown away.

Weinstein suffered from medical problems throughout his incarceration, his lawyers said. He is currently incarcerated at the Rikers Island prison complex.

Earlier in the hearing, Farber sent a letter from prosecutors last week asking the court to remind Weinstein’s lawyers not to discuss or disparage potential witnesses in public before the retrial.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office says Aidala made statements earlier this month aimed at intimidating Miriam Haley, a former television and film production assistant for whom Weinstein was convicted of sexual assault.

Aidala, Weinstein’s lawyer, apologized to the judge, saying he did not intend to intimidate anyone.

But he said his client was also entitled to a “vigorous defense” and that the defense’s position was that “lies were told in the last trial and will be told in this one.”

Aidala argued that lawyers for Weinstein’s accusers held press conferences criticizing Weinstein throughout his legal ordeal.

“Who can defend Harvey Weinstein? » he asked the court. “Who will be his voice? »

Farber, in response, ordered both sides to “refrain from pandering to the press,” saying the matter “would not be decided in the court of public opinion” but in the court of law.

Haley did not attend Wednesday’s hearing and expressed reluctance to go through the trauma of testifying again.

Her lawyer Gloria Allred said outside the courthouse that her client had not yet made a decision on whether to participate in the retrial.

But Allred asked Aidala to apologize to Haley for the “unwarranted, vicious and false” attack on her in the courtroom earlier Wednesday. Aidala refused, later speaking to reporters.

Speaking outside of court On May 1, Aidala said Haley lied to the jury about why she came forward and that her team planned an aggressive cross-examination on “if she dares to come and show her face here” .

Weinstein’s original trial was held in the same courtroom where Trump is currently being tried, but the two men were unlikely to cross paths. Weinstein is in custody and was taken in and out of the courtroom under guard. He appeared in a courtroom on a different floor than where Trump is currently being tried.

At his trial in 2020, Weinstein was convicted of raping Jessica Mann, an aspiring actress, and sexually assaulting Haley. But last month New York’s highest court rejected these convictions after determining that the trial judge had unfairly allowed testimony against him based on allegations from other women who were not part of the case. Weinstein, 72, has maintained that all sexual activity was consensual.

The Associated Press generally does not identify people alleging sexual assault unless they consent to being named, as Haley and Mann did.

THE New York decision reopened a painful chapter in America’s record regarding sexual misconduct by powerful figures. THE The #MeToo era began in 2017 with a flood of allegations against Weinstein.

Weinstein, who was serving a 23-year sentence in New York, was also sentenced to Los Angeles in 2022 of another rape and is still sentenced to 16 years in prison in California.

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Follow Philippe Marcelo on twitter.com/philmarcelo.

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News Source : apnews.com

Eleon

With a penchant for words, Eleon Smith began writing at an early age. As editor-in-chief of his high school newspaper, he honed his skills telling impactful stories. Smith went on to study journalism at Columbia University, where he graduated top of his class. After interning at the New York Times, Smith landed a role as a news writer. Over the past decade, he has covered major events like presidential elections and natural disasters. His ability to craft compelling narratives that capture the human experience has earned him acclaim. Though writing is his passion, Eleon also enjoys hiking, cooking and reading historical fiction in his free time. With an eye for detail and knack for storytelling, he continues making his mark at the forefront of journalism.
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