Harvey Weinstein faces sexual assault and rape charges as L.A. trial begins
As the trial against Harvey Weinstein opened today, he was represented by longtime attorney and Trump campaign donor Sidney Powell. The Los Angeles Times reported that Powell has a history of representing sexual assault victims in civil lawsuits against movie studios and other companies.
Weiner is accused of raping actress Rose McGowan in 2013. He was previously accused of groping actor Asia Argento and using his fame to silence her when she publicly accused him of harassment.
Ahead of the trial, the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office requested that Weinstein’s accusers be brought in for examination by experts so they could better present evidence against him. That’s now included in the trial, which has already gone on longer than any criminal trial in Los Angeles history.
In January, Weinstein’s lawyer, Abbas Kiarostami, called McGowan a “liar who made a deal to get famous,” while Weinstein called her a “liar for fame” and “a gold-digger who was obsessed with me.”
In his opening statement Thursday, Weinstein’s defense attorney said McGowan’s “testimony wasn’t credible,” while Weinstein said, “I’m asking you to trust my testimony.”
The trial lasted the full day and was expected to last all night. Prosecutors had the final rebuttal witness to present, Los Angeles City Councilman Mitchell Englander, who took the stand to tell the jury about the city’s “historic work against sexual assault,” according to the Times.
The trial is expected to resume Monday. The trial is expected to resume Monday morning.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Weinstein is asking for more time to conduct a deposition with accuser Mira Sorvino, who’s scheduled to testify after her first day in the courtroom. Weinstein is also asking for more time to depose the other women who came forward, as well as for an expedited decision on his motion to block the jurors from learning of the women’s allegations.
Weinstein pleaded not guilty Monday to all charges and faces up to 10 years in California state prison if convicted. Judge Philip Gutierrez set a March 17 trial date. As part of the settlement agreement, Weinstein has agreed to pay up