Harvey Weinstein defense challenges Jennifer Siebel Newsom on rape allegation and other allegations
A representative of actress-film producer Harvey Weinstein has said Tuesday that the allegations that he sexually assaulted a woman at the Manhattan premiere of “Silence,” were “completely false and without basis.”
The woman, who Newsom said in the New York Times article was his protegee, came forward with the allegations over the weekend. The woman said there was an inappropriate sexual encounter, involving oral sex, between Weinstein and her at the opening in April 2015.
The woman was not named in the Times story, but Newsom made that clear in the piece as well as in a Washington Post opinion piece, where she cited personal accounts of other accusers, describing their courage in coming forward.
On Tuesday, Weinstein’s lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, issued a statement that said the allegations were “absolutely not true” and that Newsom’s account “is simply untrue.”
Newsom’s remarks made in the piece were reported by The Hollywood Reporter, whose report includes quotes from three women who said the rape allegation was untrue.
“As a young adult, I knew that the power dynamics at the highest levels of my profession were dangerous,” Newsom wrote. “I chose to stay silent because I thought I had to. But in light of the recent revelations about President Donald Trump’s history of sexual misconduct, I want to be the loudest voice in my community — one that has the courage to say ‘no’ to powerful men who abuse their power.”
“I also wanted to make clear that if Mr. Weinstein is innocent, he is not my client or the first man to ever accuse him of sexual misconduct,” she added. “Neither should I be a part of helping him to hurt others, nor should I be a spokesperson for the powerful for helping him to not be the powerful.”
The Times story also quoted the unnamed woman as saying she had been raped by Weinstein at least twice but that she had never given him permission to touch her in the alleged assaults, which took place over a number of years from 2008 to 2013