Harvey Weinstein Pleads Not Guilty to Rape in NY

Rose McGowan

Rose McGowan

Watching the stunning images of Harvey Weinstein walking into a courthouse Friday in handcuffs, a detective on each arm, Louisette Geiss still felt a shiver of fear in reaction to the man who, she says, once cornered her and tried to physically force her to watch him masturbate.

"My job is not to defend behaviour", he said.

Mr Weinstein turned himself in to police in the city earlier in the day. That's not what this is about.

Harvey Weinstein is now in the crosshairs of federal prosecutors who are looking to possibly prosecute him under a law that some legal experts say is a giant stretch.

Weinstein's spokesman Juda Engelmayer and Weinstein's lawyer Benjamin Brafman both declined to comment.

Speaking to the New Yorker on Thursday, Evans confirmed she was pressing charges, "They said that if I do nothing, Harvey would walk".

Shortly before a grim-faced Weinstein appeared before the judge to face charges against two women, in a momentous day for the more than 70 who have accused him.

"He's not taking responsibility for a single one of these victims", she said in an interview.

Mr Weinstein was sacked a year ago from his production firm, the Weinstein Company, which later filed for bankruptcy. Among other things, the grand jury is delving into whether Mr. Weinstein used employees of his former production company to identify women for him to assault, to set up meetings with the women or to discredit them if they complained.

Weinstein was released later on Friday on a $1 million bond. The criminal sex act charge is believed to stem from the 2004 incident involving Lucia Evans, who claims Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex during a casting call.

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

Weinstein arrived at the 1st Precinct in Manhattan in NY early Friday to turn himself in.

Weinstein turned himself in to police in NY on criminal charges including rape and sexual misconduct based on allegations from two women.

Weinstein has said repeatedly through his lawyers that he did not have nonconsensual sex with anyone.

In a statement, The Women's March said they hope the courage of the women who came forward will "continue to inspire others to break their silence".

London's Metropolitan Police and Los Angeles prosecutors have said they are reviewing accusations of sexual assault against him.

Dozens of women continued to speak out, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Kate Beckinsale, Cara Delevingne, Salma Hayek and Lupita N'yongo, who brought attention to the conspiracy of silence surrounding Weinstein.

The New York charges are the first against Weinstein, even though several other cities opened up investigations into the producer in the wake of the reporting on the allegations.

The Manhattan district attorney's office and NY police have investigated Weinstein for months, coming under growing pressure from the Time's Up movement to bring the disgraced producer to justice.

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