NEW YORK — A New York City grand jury has indicted movie producer Harvey Weinstein on rape charges, the Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said on Wednesday.
Weinstein turned himself in to New York police last week and was released on bail.
“This indictment brings the defendant another step closer to accountability for the crimes of violence with which he is now charged,” Vance said in a statement on the charges against the disgraced 66-year-old co-founder of the Miramax film studio and the Weinstein Co.
Weinstein, who previously denied any nonconsensual sexual encounters, has been charged with rape in the first and third degrees, and criminal sexual act in the first degree.
The announcement came hours after Weinstein’s lawyers said he’d decline to testify before the grand jury because there wasn’t enough time to prepare him and “political pressure” made an indictment unavoidable.
Weinstein’s indictment by a grand jury follows his arrest and court appearance last Friday on charges related to two women among the scores who have accused him of sexual misconduct, all of which he has denied.
Ben Brafman, the head of Weinstein’s legal team, said his client would plead not guilty and defend himself against the charges.
If convicted on the most serious charges, Weinstein could face between five and 25 years in prison.
Lindsay Lohan apologises for controversial #MeToo comments
WASHINGTON — After receiving backlash for saying women’s #MeToo stories make them ‘look weak’, actress Lindsay Lohan is now apologising for her comments.
The 32-year-old actress caused uproar when she claimed that women speaking out to share their #MeToo experience “look weak”. She also claimed that the movement had been hijacked by “attention seekers”.
The actress,in a statement to People magazine, said she would like to “unreservedly apologise for any hurt and distress caused by a quote in a recent interview with The Times.”
Lindsay further added that her comments “solely related to my hope that a handful of false testimonies out of a tsunami of heroic voices do not serve to dilute the importance of the #MeToo movement, and all of us who champion it. However, I have since learned how statements like mine are seen as hurtful, which was never my intent. I’m sorry for any pain I may have caused.”
Lindsay concluded by saying that she feels “very strongly” about the #MeToo movement and has the “utmost respect and admiration for the women brave enough to come forward and speak out about their experiences. Their testimony has served to protect those who can’t speak, and give strength to those who have struggled to have their voices heard.”
On a related note, in her interview with The Times, Lohan had said that women who shared their experiences during the #MeToo movement were “attention seekers.”Follow @gorkhapost