Harvey Weinstein has been indicted in California on sexual assault charges, one of his lawyers said on Monday. The disgraced former producer and convicted rapist appeared n a New York court proceeding over whether to extradite him to the state. As reported by The L.A. Times, Weinstein appeared via video from the Wende correctional facility, near Buffalo. He is currently serving a 23-year sentence for sexually assaulting former production assistant Mimi Haleyi and actress Jessica Mann.
California’s criminal case against Weinstein covers alleged attacks on five women from 2004 to 2013. It includes four counts of forcible rape, four counts of forcible oral copulation, two counts of sexual battery by restraint, and one count of sexual penetration by use of force. Weinstein maintains his innocence and that all of the alleged assaults were consensual.
Norman Effman, an attorney representing Weinstein, asked that his client be arraigned on the indictment virtually in New York rather than extradited because Weinstein is currently suffering from a series of health problems. According to Effman, Weinstein is ‘almost technically blind at this point’, losing his teeth, and suffering from cardiac and back problems. Erie County District Attorney John Flynn said, ‘I really don’t care about his medical condition. I’m not trying to be crass here, OK, but I’m not really concerned with the issues he has. I’m more concerned about the victims in California.’
In total, more than 80 women have accused Weinstein of sexual abuse, dating back decades. In March of this year, a woman filed suit against Weinstein alleging that he sexually assaulted her when she was 19. In January, a bankruptcy court approved the liquidation plan of The Weinstein Company, which put aside $17 million for those who accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct.
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