We­in­stein sex scan­dal goes global

Daily Dispatch - - World News -

THE case against Har­vey We­in­stein has taken on an in­ter­na­tional di­men­sion, with po­lice in New York and Bri­tain launch­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tions – while a fourth woman ac­cused the movie mogul of rape.

An avalanche of claims of sex­ual ha­rass­ment, as­sault and rape by the hugely in­flu­en­tial Hol­ly­wood pro­ducer have sur­faced since the pub­li­ca­tion last week of an ex­plo­sive New York Times re­port al­leg­ing a his­tory of abu­sive be­hav­iour dat­ing back decades.

On Thurs­day, US ac­tress Rose McGowan be­came the fourth woman to ac­cuse We­in­stein of rap­ing her.

A spokesman for the New York Po­lice De­part­ment mean­while con­firmed it was in­ves­ti­gat­ing a 2004 case, but pro­vided no de­tails.

The New York Daily News re­ported that the case in­volved as­pir­ing ac­tress Lu­cia Evans, who ear­lier told the New Yorker mag­a­zine that We­in­stein had forced her to per­form oral sex on him.

McGowan be­rated Ama­zon CEO Jeff Be­zos in a blis­ter­ing se­ries of tweets on Thurs­day, claim­ing she had told Ama­zon Stu­dios chief Roy Price that We­in­stein had raped her but was ig­nored.

“Over and over I said it. He said it hadn’t been proven. I said I was the proof,” she wrote.

Ama­zon Stu­dios later said that Price – who has also been ac­cused of sex­ual ha­rass­ment by TV pro­ducer Isa Hack­ett – was “on leave of ab­sence ef­fec­tive im­me­di­ately”.

On Wed­nes­day, We­in­stein was seen in pub­lic for the first time in days when pa­parazzi de­scended upon him as he left his daugh­ter’s home in Los An­ge­les.

“Guys, I’m not do­ing OK but I’m try­ing,” he said in a video ob­tained by ABC. “I got to get help. You know what, we all make mis­takes.”

As he climbed into an over­sized sports util­ity ve­hi­cle, he said he hoped peo­ple would give him “a sec­ond chance”.

The TMZ web­site re­ported that We­in­stein later flew to Ari­zona to en­ter a re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tre, pos­si­bly The Mead­ows, a fa­cil­ity north­west of Phoenix where golfer Tiger Woods and su­per­model Kate Moss have been treated.

The al­le­ga­tions against a man who is a prom­i­nent sup­porter of lib­eral causes and a ma­jor Demo­cratic Party fundraiser sent tremors through the party, with con­ser­va­tives ac­cus­ing Barack Obama and Hil­lary Clin­ton of wait­ing too long to dis­avow We­in­stein.

Obama even­tu­ally said he was “dis­gusted” and Clin­ton that she was “ap­palled” by the al­leged acts.

The al­le­ga­tions against one of cin­ema’s ti­tans – a man whose stu­dio has gar­nered more than 300 Os­car nominations – have shaken Hol­ly­wood, which has long bat­tled a rep­u­ta­tion for ex­ploit­ing fe­male ac­tors, by­pass­ing fe­male di­rec­tors and over­look­ing fe­male-cen­tred scripts.

We­in­stein’s ac­cusers in­clude top ac­tresses such as An­gelina Jolie, Gwyneth Pal­trow, Mira Sorvino, Kate Beck­in­sale and ac­tor/singer Ash­ley Judd. — AFP

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