Harvey Weinstein: 1 sexual assault count dismissed, for now

Jul 29, 2021, 1:08 PM | Updated: 1:58 pm
Harvey Weinstein, the 69-year-old convicted rapist and disgraced movie mogul, wears a face mask as ...

Harvey Weinstein, the 69-year-old convicted rapist and disgraced movie mogul, wears a face mask as he listens in court during a pre-trial hearing in Los Angeles, Thursday, 29 July 2021. Weinstein pleaded not guilty Wednesday to four counts of rape and seven other sexual assault counts in California.(Etienne Laurent/Pool Photo via AP)

(Etienne Laurent/Pool Photo via AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles judge on Thursday dismissed one of 11 sexual assault counts against Harvey Weinstein, giving the former movie mogul and convicted rapist a minor and possibly temporary victory.

At a hearing with the 69-year-old Weinstein in the courtroom, Judge Lisa B. Lench agreed with his defense attorneys that a count alleging sexual battery by restraint in May of 2010 was too old, and outside the statute of limitations.

But she gave the prosecution permission to refile the charge in a way that may be allowable, setting up an ongoing fight.

Weinstein pleaded not guilty to four counts of rape and seven other sexual assault counts last week in his first court appearance in the California case. He was extradited from New York, where he is serving a 23-year sentence for convictions of rape and sexual assault.

In Los Angeles, Weinstein was first charged with the now-dismissed count in January of 2020, before the statute of limitations had expired. Prosecutors then got an indictment from a grand jury on an identical count six months later, when the time had lapsed.

Weinstein’s lawyers successfully argued at Thursday’s hearing that the grand jury indictment counted as a new case, making the charge “fatally flawed.”

“No one forced the prosecution to go to the grand jury,” Weinstein attorney Alan Jackson said in court. “They chose to enter a new case.”

Prosecutors argued that it was a continuation of the same case and should be considered what’s often called a superseding indictment.

Other charges against Weinstein are for even older incidents, but different statutes apply to them.

Outside court, the defense touted the ruling as a significant victory, pointing out that it removes one of the five women involved in the 11 counts.

“Twenty percent of the district attorneys case has just been thrown out,” Weinstein attorney Mark Werksman said.

None of the women have been identified.

The judge sided with the prosecution on two other counts that she refused to dismiss, rejecting defense arguments those incidents were also too old.

No trial date has been set for Weinstein. More technical fights are likely to come before it begins as his lawyers seek to erode the case against him. They have said the charges are all baseless, old and uncorroborated.

Weinstein was brought into court in a wheelchair wearing brown county jail attire. A bailiff unshackled him from the chair and put him next to his attorneys.

The lawyers argued that Weinstein should be allowed to change into a suit for this and similar proceedings, a move that’s standard for a jury trial but less common for pre-trial hearings.

Werksman called the jail clothes a “mark of Cain” that branded his client a criminal in photos and video from the courtroom.

The judge rejected the argument, suggesting the garb wasn’t so bad.

“Mr. Weinstein is wearing a brown top,” Lench said. “You know it’s jail attire, but I’m not sure everybody knows it’s jail attire.”

__

Follow AP Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton on Twitter: twitter.com/andyjamesdalton

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Wind turbines turn near the village of Feldheim, rear left, near Treuenbrietzen, Germany, Wednesday...
Associated Press

In one tiny German town, nobody worries about energy bills

FELDHEIM, Germany (AP) — Europeans are opening their energy bills with trepidation these days, bracing for hefty price hikes as utility companies pass on the surging cost of natural gas, oil and electricity tied to Russia’s war in Ukraine. Many are trying to conserve by turning down the heat and shutting off lights this winter. […]
7 hours ago
Associated Press

Bed Bath & Beyond 2Q sales fall but meet Street’s view

Bed Bath & Beyond’s sales declined 28% in its fiscal second quarter, but the performance managed to meet Wall Street’s expectations. The Union, New Jersey-based home goods retailer reported sales of $1.44 billion for the three months ended Aug. 27. That compares with sales of $1.99 billion a year earlier. Sales at stores open at […]
7 hours ago
Utility trucks are staged ahead of Hurricane Ian, near the Florida Turnpike, Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2...
Associated Press

People trapped, 2.5M without power as Ian drenches Florida

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Hurricane Ian carved a path of destruction across Florida, trapping people in flooded homes, cutting off the only bridge to a barrier island, damaging a hospital from above and below and knocking out power to 2.5 million people as it dumped rain over a huge area on Thursday. One of […]
7 hours ago
Associated Press

Spain agrees on temporary wealth tax, hikes for big earners

MADRID (AP) — Spain’s Socialist-led coalition government said Thursday that residents whose wealth exceeds 3 million euros ($2.9 million) will be subject to a new asset tax in 2023 and 2024. Finance Minister María Jesús Montero described the temporary wealth tax, which she said will affect 23,000 people, or 0.1 % of taxpayers, as one […]
7 hours ago
Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, greets dignitaries from Pacific Island Countries during th...
Associated Press

Biden’s Pacific strategy heralds new engagement in region

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House on Thursday unveiled a Pacific strategy designed to bolster U.S. engagement with more than a dozen island nations on issues including climate change and maritime security while pledging to expand the U.S. diplomatic presence in the region. The Biden administration released its new strategy, as well as plans for […]
7 hours ago
FILE - The Treasury Building is viewed in Washington, May 4, 2021. Tens of millions of small U.S. c...
Associated Press

Treasury moves forward with database on corporate ownership

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tens of millions of small U.S. companies will soon be required to provide the government with details on their owners and others who benefit from them under a regulation that became final on Thursday and is intended to peel back the layers of ownership that often hide unlawfully obtained assets. The Treasury […]
7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
SCHWARTZ LASER EYE CENTER

Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
Harvey Weinstein: 1 sexual assault count dismissed, for now