Harvey Weinstein’s Sexual Assault Appeal Reaches Conclusion
Disgraced Miramax co-founder Harvey Weinstein's appeal against his sexual assault charges has reached a verdict.
Harvey Weinstein’s appeal against his sexual assault and rape charges has reached a verdict in the New York courts and the conviction has been upheld. The appeal argued that the outcome was rigged in favor of the prosecution, but these arguments have been rejected. The decision to uphold the conviction was unanimous, with the five justices finding that the judge did not make any errors in the original ruling. In addition to finding Weinstein guilty, the conviction sentenced him to 23 years in prison.
Harvey Weinstein’s lawyers tried to make the argument that the trial judge didn’t allow Weinstein a fair trial due to several factors. The first argument was the prosecutors shouldn’t have been allowed to call what they called three “prior bad acts” witnesses to testify on the stand. They also made the argument that Weinstein should have been allowed to testify in his own defense, but they felt like he was blocked from doing so because the incidents of bullying and physical violence were used to impeach any testimony. These arguments ended up being rejected and the appellate court found that the judge was within his rights to allow this evidence to come forth. Another appeal from the lawyers to overturn the verdict argued that the jury didn’t have enough evidence to find him guilty without a reasonable doubt.
A spokesperson for Harvey Weinstein, Juda Engelmeyer, has said that the next step is to petition the Court of Appeals. The initial conviction went through in February of 2020. At the time, he is being held in a Los Angeles correctional facility and there are 11 additional sex crimes pending trial. Weinstein’s current conviction is for the sexual assault of Miriam Haley and the third-degree rape of Jessica Mann. The defense tried to argue the credibility of the accusers, saying that they maintained friendly relations with Weinstein after the incidents.
Finally, Harvey Weinstein’s team tried to argue with the judge’s decision to not remove Juror 11. Juror 11 was apparently a writer who had an upcoming novel about predatory older men. They disagreed with the judge’s decision to let them remain on the panel after the contents of the book were revealed. Regardless of the arguments that Weinstein’s defense tried to make, the conviction will be officially upheld. Unless a petition for appeal works, there likely won’t be any more changes in this case. The other pending trials could still affect the final sentence.
Harvey Weinstein will not be eligible for parole until around 18 years from now. His attorneys have appealed that his poor health and need for treatment should allow him a different situation. It remains to be seen if the parole terms are changed. Harvey Weinstein is known for being a producer of a variety of films throughout his career. He is also known for co-founding Miramax. Weinstein’s ongoing legal saga began in 2017 when the New York Times published an article revealing decades of allegations against Weinstein. Since then, many women have come forward to accuse Weinstein and reveal their experiences with him.