Former Hollywood film mogul Harvey Weinstein has been found guilty by a Los Angeles jury of raping a woman.
The two-month trial heard how Weinstein used his influence to lure women into private meetings before attacking them.
The 70-year-old Oscar winner is facing up to 24 years in prison when he is sentenced. He is already serving 23 years in jail after he was convicted of rape and sexual assault at his first trial in New York two years ago.
Weinstein was found guilty on Monday of rape and two sexual assault charges involving an accuser known as Jane Doe 1, to protect her anonymity.
The jury could not reach verdicts on allegations by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the wife of California Governor Gavin Newsom, and a woman known as Jane Doe 2. A mistrial was declared on those counts. He was also acquitted of sexual battery against an accuser known as Jane Doe 3.
The Shakespeare in Love and Pulp Fiction producer and co-founder of the entertainment company Miramax was wearing a grey suit and looked pale at the court in Los Angeles on Monday. He was not using a wheelchair as he had done at previous court appearances.
When he heard guilty on count one, the former Hollywood producer looked down. Then the court clerk read guilty on count two and he looked at his lawyer. At one point he stared at the jury.
The trial heard from dozens of witnesses in more than four weeks of often emotional testimony. But Monday’s verdict focused on allegations by four women stemming from 2005-13. The jury of eight men and four women spent nine days deliberating on three charges of rape and four other sexual assault counts.
The woman whom Weinstein was convicted on Monday of raping, Jane Doe 1, was a Russian-born model. The trial’s first witness, she testified that she was in Los Angeles for an Italian film festival in February 2013 when the producer arrived uninvited at her Beverly Hills hotel room and raped her.
She said after the verdict: “Harvey Weinstein forever destroyed a part of me that night in 2013 and I will never get that back. “The criminal trial was brutal and Weinstein’s lawyers put me through hell on the witness stand, but I knew I had to see this through to the end, and I did. “I hope Weinstein never sees the outside of a prison cell during his lifetime.”
Ms Siebel Newsom gave emotional testimony that she was a documentary filmmaker when she was raped by Weinstein in a hotel room in 2005. California’s first lady said in a statement on Monday after the verdict: “Throughout the trial, Weinstein’s lawyers used sexism, misogyny, and bullying tactics to intimidate, demean, and ridicule us survivors. “The trial was a stark reminder that we as a society have work to do.”
The only other of the four main accusers to publicly identify herself was Lauren Young. She said she was a model and aspiring actress and screenwriter when she met Weinstein about a script in 2013. Ms Young said he had trapped her in a hotel bathroom and sexually assaulted her. The jury was unable to reach a verdict on the charges involving her.
A massage therapist, Jane Doe 3, testified that Weinstein had trapped and sexually assaulted her in a hotel bathroom in 2010. He was cleared of that attack. His conviction in New York in 2020 was a landmark moment for the #MeToo movement, which had been calling out widespread sexual abuse and harassment in the film industry for several years. Weinstein is currently appealing against the New York conviction.
More than 80 women have come forward with accusations of sexual assault and misconduct against Weinstein spanning several decades.