A court in Los Angeles heard yesterday that movie mogul Harvey Weinstein used his power and prominence in the showbiz industry to rape women, leaving them afraid for their careers if they stood up to him.
Deputy District Attorney Paul Thompson used graphic quotes from Weinstein’s accusers, referred to as Jane Does 1-4 regarding Weinstein’s crimes.
He is currently in Los Angeles for his second criminal trial having been extradited from New York where he is serving a 23-year sentence. More rape accusers have come forward in this trial to allege that Weinstein is a sexual predator.
“I’m shaking and kind of being dragged into the bedroom,” Thompson quoted one accuser saying.
“Part of me was thinking I should just make a run for it, but he’s a big guy,” he quoted another one saying.
“I was trying to convince him that it’s nothing gonna happen… I was like please, I have kids,” Thompson recounted for the jury.
Four Jane Does and four other women will testify against the movie mogul on rape charges, and they attest to the “prior bad acts” committed by him outside of Los Angeles. Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the Governor of California’s wife is one of his victims.
According to the prosecutors, each of the women described “abnormalities” on the movie mogul’s genitalia,” the result of a surgery the defendant had in 1999″ that caused noticeable scarring.
During the prosecutor’s opening statements, Weinstein did not show any reaction. Weinstein, 70 who is said to be ill was brought into the courtroom in a wheelchair and had trouble moving to a seat at the defence table.
Mark Werksman, his attorney told the jury the prosecution’s opening arguments were designed to “shock and awe,” and said the allegations are “weak and unsubstantiated.”
“You’ll learn that in Hollywood, sex was a commodity,” the attorney said. He defended Weinstein’s actions as part of a “casting couch culture.”
Weinstein has pleaded not guilty to all 11 of the charges. If found guilty in Los Angeles, he could face a maximum sentence of 140 years.
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