While Harvey Weinstein has not been charged with a crime over recent multiple allegations of sexual assault and harassment, police are investigating past allegations.
Earlier this week, The New Yorker reported 13 women claim the famed movie producer sexually harassed or assaulted them and three of them accuse him of rape. Weinstein’s rep said that “any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein.”
E! News has learned that the New York Police Department is opening a new investigation in light of the claims that have been published in the news. A spokesperson said it is an active investigation and is being investigated by the Special Victims Division. No details about a specific case were given.
“Based on information referenced in published news reports, the NYPD is conducting a review to determine if there are any additional complaints relating to the Harvey Weinstein matter,” a New York Police Department spokesperson told E! News on Thursday. “No filed complaints have been identified as of this time and as always, the NYPD encourages anyone who may have information pertaining to this matter to call the CrimeStoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS.”
Weinstein has not commented. On Wednesday, The Hollywood Reporter said the producer added top criminal defense attorney Blair Berk, who has represented Mel Gibson and Lindsay Lohan. to his legal team.
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One of the three women who accused him of rape is Lucia Evans, formerly Lucia Stoller. She told the outlet that in 2004, when she was an aspiring actress, she met with Weinstein at his request, after being told that a female casting assistant would attend the meeting. She said she ended up alone with Weinstein and that he forced her to perform oral sex on him.
“I said, over and over, ‘I don’t want to do this, stop, don’t,’ ” Evans had told The New Yorker‘s Ronan Farrow about the alleged 2004 incident. “I tried to get away, but maybe I didn’t try hard enough. I didn’t want to kick him or fight him…He’s a big guy. He overpowered me.”
She said that after the encounter, she met with the female casting executive, who sent her scripts and also came to one of her acting-class readings. Evans also said she still has nightmares about Weinstein.
Officials told the New York Post that while at the time, New York had a five-year statute of limitations for prosecuting felony sex crimes, the incident is covered by a 2006 law that removed that restriction.
Another women who accuses Weinstein of rape id Italian xXx actress Asia Argento, who claims he forcibly performed oral sex on her in 1997 in France.
In 2015, the NYPD investigated a misdemeanor sexual abuse complaint against Weinstein made by Filipina-Italian model Ambra Battilana Gutierrez. After the alleged incident, cops secretly recorded the producer apologizing to her while trying to coax her into a New York City hotel room. The case was dropped due to insufficient evidence.
Audio of the tape was released recently. At one point, she asked him, “Why did you touch my breast?” He apologized and said, “I’m used to that” and added, “I won’t do it again.”
New York County District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. told reporters on Wednesday, “Our sex-crimes prosecutors made the determination that this was not going to be a provable case and the decision was made not to go forward.”
“We’re focused on the facts, not whether people liked Harvey,” he added.
The New Yorker report followed a The New York Times story that said he had reached eight settlements with women who made allegations of past sexual harassment. He has apologized for past behavior “with colleagues” and says he is in therapy. He also says he plans to sue The New York Times for an estimated $50 million over its story, which one of his attorneys said is “saturated with false and defamatory statements.”
The New York Times had later reported thatGwyneth Paltrow said Weinstein sexually harassed her more than 20 years ago, while Angelina Jolie recalled a “bad experience” she had had with him that prompted her to choose “never to work with him again.”
Several other women, including Cara Delevingne, have also spoken about publicly their own past alleged sexual harassment experiences with Weinstein. He has not responded to their remarks.
—Reporting by Holly Passalaqua