Harvey Weinstein and the executives of his extinct film studio finalize the negotiation to settle the lawsuits filed by about thirty actresses and former employees who accused him of sexual abuse. The parties would have reached an agreement principle valued at 25 million dollars. The pact would not require, however, that the Hollywood producer admit bad behavior. The payment, which must be approved by a judge, would be made by your insurer.
The final document submitted to the court that oversees the bankruptcy of Weinstein Company requires that it be signed by all parties. Months ago it was speculated that the agreement was closed but did not prosper because of the objections presented by some of the plaintiffs who accused the producer of sexual harassment and the company of covering up the conduct. The pact with the victims would be part of a global agreement valued at 47 million.
Of the 25 million, the newspaper The New York Times it details that 6.2 million would be distributed among 18 victims. The rest would serve to cover a class action lawsuit and another filed by the New York Attorney General's Office. The pact leaves would also allow other plaintiffs to join in the future. Half of the disbursement, in any case, would be destined to cover legal costs. Civil litigation parallels the criminal process in Manhattan.
The film producer on Wednesday assured the judge that health problems will not be an impediment to be present on January 6 at the trial for sexually assaulting two women. He did it during a hearing in which the conditions of the bond were modified. Weinstein chose to change the cash payment he made from a million dollars after his arrest for a guarantee of two million. It offered assets as collateral.
Weinstein entered the room using a walker to be able to walk and notified the judge that he will have to undergo an operation this week to relieve his back pain. The defendant's lawyers tried to convince in parallel to the judge Burker that it was not necessary to increase the bond. The Prosecutor's Office took advantage of a change in the criminal system to request that the bond be raised to a cash payment of five million. It was one of the three options that were raised.
The Prosecutor's Office presented on Friday to justify the increase that the producer violated on more than fifty occasions the conditions of the bond, in less than two months. So, argument, he tried to prevent him from knowing where he was. The defense insisted on Wednesday that it was due to technical problems with the electronic tracking device. "He has no intention of escaping," said the lawyer, "nobody but Weinstein in this court wants the trial to begin."
Harvey Weinstein faces charges for raping a woman in a hotel room in Manhattan in 2013 and forcing another to perform a sexual act in 2006, for which he could go to prison for life if the jury considers him guilty in his verdict. The defendant maintains his innocence and his lawyers will use the trial to prove that sexual relations were consented. The lawyers insist that the prosecution must prove its guilt.
The surgical intervention will not prevent him from starting the trial on January 6, Weinstein himself insisted before the judge. A day later, the jury will be selected. The defense requested that it move outside the district of Manhattan, to another court in the State of New, to ensure that the defendant will have a fair trial. Complaints by more than 70 women against the abusive conduct of Weinstein detonated the MeToo movement.
The case against the producer generated unprecedented attention and the legal team representing the defendant took advantage of the hearings to state before the judge that Weinstein was already being the subject of a public trial for media coverage. That, they insist, will make the selection of the jury difficult. The trial is expected to last two months and the prosecution is expected to call actress Anabella Sciorra, one of her victims, as a witness.