Harvey Weinstein facing four new sex crime charges in Los Angeles

Harvey Weinstein

Los Angeles prosecutors filed four new sex crime charges against Harvey Weinstein as his rape trial got underway in New York City on Monday.

Hours after the disgraced movie mogul arrived at a Manhattan courtroom on Monday, Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey held a press conference in California to announce Weinstein has been slapped with one felony count each of forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, sexual penetration by use of force, and sexual battery by restraint.

The charges relate to two separate incidents in 2013, when he allegedly raped one female and sexually assaulted another.

District Attorney Lacey told reporters: "We believe the evidence will show that the defendant used his power and influence to gain access to his victims and then commit violent crimes against them."

Authorities have spent months investigating accusations from at least eight women, claiming the producer forced himself on them during meetings in California.

Weinstein, 67, has previously denied all claims of sexual misconduct, insisting any intimate encounters were consensual.

The news emerges as he fights five counts of rape and sexual assault on trial in New York, where he is accused of performing a forcible sex act on a woman in 2006, and attacking a second in a Manhattan hotel room in 2013.

Jury selection is set to begin on Tuesday, a day after Weinstein's attorney, Arthur Aidala, had his request to sequester the eventual jurors for the entirety of the eight-week trial rejected.

Aidala had argued the producer, who has pleaded not guilty, would not receive a fair trial due to the intense media coverage if his motion was denied, but the plea failed to sway Justice James Burke, who dismissed the unusual request.

If convicted, Weinstein, who produced hit movies like Shakespeare in Love and Pulp Fiction, faces life in prison.


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