What happens now that Harvey Weinstein's conviction was overturned in New York


Category:  News & Politics

Via:  perrie-halpern  •  4 weeks ago  •  1 comments

By:   Chloe Melas

What happens now that Harvey Weinstein's conviction was overturned in New York
Harvey Weinstein's 2020 rape conviction was overturned Thursday by the New York Court of Appeals and many are wondering what happens next.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

Harvey Weinstein's 2020 rape conviction was overturned Thursday by the New York Court of Appeals and many are wondering what happens next.

Weinstein has been serving a 23-year prison sentence in New York's Mohawk Correctional Facility following his conviction on charges of criminal sex act for forcibly performing oral sex on a TV and film production assistant in 2006 and third-degree rape for an attack on an aspiring actor in 2013.

Where things stand now

In an interview with NBC News on Thursday following the New York Court of Appeal's decision, Weinstein's longtime spokesperson, Juda Engelmayer, said that their first order of priority is to seek medical care for the 73-year-old.

"We're going to try to bring him for medical care here in Bellevue [Hospital] down here first," he said. "[Weinstein] is still in a walker, still in a wheelchair ... he has audio issues, he has heart issues. Harvey has a lot of health mountains and hurdles to climb but hopefully this cheers up his mood better and helps him fight them better."

While he awaits a new trial in New York, Engelmayer said there is a chance Weinstein may be extradited to California where he faces a 16-year prison sentence after being convicted of rape and sexual assault in a separate trial in 2022.

"We don't know exactly what the process is but we expect within 24 to 48 hours the Los Angeles courts or Los Angeles prosecutor will file an extradition charge to bring him in there," he said.

How we got here

The state Court of Appeals found that the judge in the landmark #MeToo trial prejudiced Weinstein, the former film mogul, with improper rulings, including a decision to let women testify about allegations that weren't part of the case.

"We conclude that the trial court erroneously admitted testimony of uncharged, alleged prior sexual acts against persons other than the complainants of the underlying crimes because that testimony served no material non-propensity purpose," the court said in a 4-3 decision.

"The court compounded that error when it ruled that defendant, who had no criminal history, could be cross examined about those allegations as well as numerous allegations of misconduct that portrayed defendant in a highly prejudicial light," it said.

New York Court of Appeals Judge Jenny Rivera called the errors "egregious"and said the remedy is a new trial. Weinstein'saccusers could again be called to testify if prosecutors decide to pursue another trial.

Judge Anthony Cannataro, one of the judges who voted against this decision, said in his dissenting opinion that this was an "unfortunate step backwards."

Attorney Lindsay Goldbrum, who represented six Weinstein accusers, called the decision a "leap backward for the rule of law" that could deter future sexual assault victims from coming forward.

"To all victims of sexual assault who are retraumatized by today's ruling, I am so sorry," said Goldbrum, whose clients included model Tarale Wulff, who testified that Weinstein raped her at his Manhattan apartment in 2005 after having lured her there with talk of a movie audition.

Will there be another trial?

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said in a statement following the court's decision that he plans to retry the case, "We will do everything in our power to retry this case and remain steadfast in our commitment to survivors of sexual assault."

During a news conference Thursday afternoon in downtown Manhattan, Weinstein's attorney Arthur Aidala said, "His case will be restarted like it just started from the beginning, and he will be transported to a facility down here yet to be determined."

A hearing is expected to be scheduled as early as next week with a new potential trial date set, according to Engelmayer.

NBC News legal analyst Danny Cevallos said in an interview with NBC News on Friday that, if Weinstein is indeed retried, it won't take as long as his previous trial.

"Depending on the court's dockets, retrials don't take all that long, they won't give them a whole new discovery period," he said.

Engelmayer and Aidala have both said that if the case is retried, Weinstein will testify.

Weinstein's California conviction

Weinstein's legal team is currently appealing his California criminal conviction and one of his lawyers on that case, Jennifer Bonjean, said that she believes the decision to overturn Weinstein's New York charges bodes well for their appeal.

"A jury was told in California that he was convicted in another state for rape. Turns out he shouldn't have been convicted, and it wasn't a fair conviction," she said in a statement. "It interfered with his presumption of innocence in a significant way in California."

The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said in a statement that the legal issues identified by the New York appeals court "are not present in the Los Angeles County case" because California law does allow for evidence that speaks to a defendant's character in sexual assault cases, "subject to the judge's discretion."

But Engelmayer remained hopeful about their changes for an appeal in Los Angeles.

"We have an even better case [in California] ... He was charged on one alleged victim for someone that we know was not in the room at the same time they claimed Harvey was. We know where she was. We know where Harvey was at the time ... we have the evidence," Engelmayer said.

Adding, "I believe one day he will walk free. He might hobble on his walker, he might be in a wheelchair, but he will be free."


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Split Personality
Professor Guide
1  Split Personality    4 weeks ago

Jeff Dahmer had no criminal history despite a decade of murdering and eating his victims.

BTK had no criminal record prior to his first arrest and subsequent 10 murder convictions.

John Orr, the fire investigator who set thousands of fires over a 30 year career in firefighting had no criminal record.

Weinstein, who is not alone in this behavior, tested, bribed or bullied women into performing sexual acts for decades; having no criminal history should not have a bearing on proving who a sexual predator is.

Now what, they will say he can't find an impartial jury in New York State?


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