Harvey Weinstein's lawyers denied mistrial motion

Harvey Weinstein

Harvey Weinstein's lawyers have tried unsuccessfully to push for a mistrial after revealing a juror in his New York rape case had written a book about older men pursuing sex with young girls.

The disgraced movie mogul is facing five felony counts of rape and sexual assault relating to alleged incidents with two separate women in 2006 and 2013.

He maintains all sexual contact was consensual, and has pleaded not guilty to the counts.

As jury selection wrapped up in a Manhattan courtroom on Friday, Weinstein's legal team attempted to have the case ruled a mistrial, days before opening statements are set to take place next Wednesday, according to TMZ.com.

Defence attorneys Donna Rotunno and Damon Cheronis claimed the female juror had lied on her juror questionnaire by failing to disclose the fact that she was the author of a forthcoming novel called Age of Consent, which they argued featured too similar a theme to some of the sexual misconduct claims levelled against their client.

The book is due to be released in July, but Justice James Burke was not swayed and dismissed the motion for a mistrial.

Seven men and five women make up the jury which will weigh the evidence against Weinstein when the trial officially gets underway.

Model Gigi Hadid was recently dismissed from her role as a juror at the Manhattan Supreme Court, after she confessed she had met Weinstein and possible witness Salma Hayek.

The 67-year-old faces life in prison if convicted of the charges.


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