Harvey Weinstein sentenced to 16 years in prison for Los Angeles rape

Harvey Weinstein appears in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom during the beginning of his rape trial in October 2022. (Etienne Laurent / Associated Press)

Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 16 years in prison Thursday for raping a woman in a Beverly Hills hotel in 2013, all but assuring that the disgraced Hollywood kingmaker will spend the rest of his life behind bars.Weinstein, who is 70 and in poor health, is already serving a 23-year prison sentence in New York, where he was convicted in 2020 of sexually assaulting other women. The judge Thursday ruled that Weinstein cannot serve the two sentences concurrently.Following a nearly two-month trial, Weinstein was convicted last month of raping an Italian model and actress after he barged into her hotel room. A jury deliberated for 10 days before convicting him of forcible rape, forcible oral copulation and sexual penetration with a foreign object in connection with the assault of the woman, who was not identified during the trial.Weinstein initially faced more than 11 counts of sexual assault stemming from allegations he raped and groped multiple women in hotel rooms in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills from 2004 to 2013. Jurors deadlocked on charges based on his alleged attacks on three other women, including Jennifer Siebel Newsom, who is married to Gov. Gavin Newsom. . And prosecutors dropped counts related to allegations made by a fourth woman, who did not appear in court to testify.

Dist. Atty. George Gascón’s office has not said whether it will seek to retry Weinstein on the counts for which the jury could not reach a verdict.The mogul has denied all wrongdoing and is appealing his New York conviction, though an earlier attempt to do so failed. While he spoke at his sentencing hearing in New York, Weinstein did not testify in his own defense at either trial and has not spoken publicly about the allegations against him.In a court filing earlier this year, L.A. County Deputy Dist. Atty. Paul Thompson argued Weinstein should receive the maximum sentence of 24 years in prison and serve the time after completing his New York sentence.Thursday’s hearing was another, and possibly final, turn in Weinstein’s complete fall from Hollywood’s highest echelon. The onetime film producer who was the force behind beloved films such as “The English Patient” and “Good Will Hunting” is now a pariah in the industry he once ruled. Weinstein’s career unraveled in 2017, after investigations by the New York Times and the New Yorker revealed the mogul had used his status in the industry to get access to actresses and models, many of whom said he abused and in some cases raped them.

In all, dozens of women have accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct.Prosecutors focused on that dynamic throughout the trial, painting Weinstein as a predator who used Hollywood as his hunting ground and specifically targeted women who he could use his influence to silence.“For this predator, hotels were his trap. Confined within those walls, victims were not able to run from his hulking mass. People were not able to hear their scream,” L.A. County Deputy Dist. Atty. Marlene Martinez said during her closing argument last month.Weinstein’s defense team aggressively attacked each woman’s credibility, arguing that some of the women had fabricated their encounters with Weinstein and that others had engaged in consensual sexual relationships with him in exchange for job opportunities. Defense attorney Alan Jackson pleaded with jurors to focus on what he said were inconsistencies in the women’s claims, as opposed to their emotional testimony.

I don’t know how to say it more gentle than this, but fury does not make fact,” he said. “Tears do not make truth.”

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