- Former film producer Harvey Weinstein has been sentenced to 23 years in prison.
- Weinstein had already been found guilty of rape and sexual assault on two women in late February.
- More than 80 women accuse Weinstein of sexual assault. The accusations against the producers were the beginning of the MeToo movement in autumn 2017.
Harvey Weinstein , the former Hollywood producer and film mogul, has been jailed for 23 years. Two weeks after the 67-year-old was convicted, his sentence has now been announced. Weinstein had been threatened with up to 29 years in prison.
The prosecutor had asked Judge James Burke for a severe punishment before the announcement. Weinstein had abused women for decades and has so far shown no regrets. The defense had already announced that it wanted to go into revision before the sentence was fixed. Her client was convinced that all of his sexual relationships had been consensual. “He kept saying,” I’m innocent, I’m innocent, “said lawyer Arthur Aidala of Weinstein’s New York Daily News portal in response to the guilty verdict in late February.
The twelve-member jury found Weinstein guilty of rape and sexual assault on two women. She saw it as proven that in 2006 Weinstein forced the former production assistant Miriam “Mimi” Haleyi into oral sex in his apartment in the Soho district of New York. He was also found guilty of raping former actress Jessica Mann, an attack that occurred in a Manhattan hotel in 2013. The prosecutor listed two rape offenses in their indictment, and the jury chose the less serious one.
After the verdict, Weinstein was not immediately taken to the infamous Rikers Island prison in New York, as originally planned, but initially to a hospital because of chest pain and high blood pressure. There he underwent heart surgery a few days later, according to media reports, and only then went to Rikers Island.
More than 80 women accuse Weinstein of sexual assault. The allegations against the producer, published in the fall of 2017 by the New York Times and New Yorker magazine, were the beginning of the “Me Too” movement. All over the world, many women and some men recognized their own stories in those of the alleged Weinstein victims – they started to collect these stories under the keyword “#metoo”. Prominent representatives of the movement celebrated the verdict against Weinstein as a milestone – but also criticized that he was not found guilty on all charges.
For Weinstein, the legal struggles have not ended even after the New York trial. In Los Angeles, he was also charged with rape and sexual assault. There could also be a process there. Apart from that, his lawyers largely negotiate with civilian plaintiffs for compensation in private.