Harvey Weinstein, the former Hollywood producer who recently fell from grace amid allegations of sexual impropriety, has been indicted by a grand jury sitting in New York City. Weinstein has been accused of rape and of committing a criminal sexual act in the first degree. Dozens of women have alleged that he sexually assaulted them. The allegations span decades.
The indictments, however, stem from the allegations of two women, one of whom says Weinstein forced her into performing sexual acts, and a second woman who is also making a claim against the fallen producer. The second woman says Weinstein raped her in a hotel room in New York City in 2013. The accused, who is out on $1 million bail, did not appear before the grand jury amid claims that his legal team did not have time to prepare and that his counsel was denied information regarding his case.
The legal team of the accused did try to show that rendering Weinstein a serial abuser was a political hatchet job due to the political pressure on the district attorney to get a conviction in the case. But Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance said the case won’t be tried in the press, but in the courtroom where it belongs. He said the recent indictment brings Weinstein closer to being accountable for the alleged violent crimes with which he is charged. The accused man has been ordered to wear an ankle bracelet limiting his movements while on bail.
Sex crimes, including rape, are serious allegations that typically require the representation of a criminal defense team. Those in New York who are facing accusations of such crimes may do well with legal counsel to aggressively fight the charges against them. A lawyer may be able to lessen any sentence imposed, if not have the charges dismissed altogether.