New York — Film producer Harvey Weinstein on Friday surrendered to authorities at a New York City police station on sex crime charges, months after he was toppled from Hollywood’s most powerful ranks by scores of women accusing him of misconduct.
More than 70 women have accused the co-founder of the Miramax film studio and Weinstein Company of sexual misconduct, including rape, with some allegations dating back decades.
The accusations, first reported by the New York Times and the New Yorker last year, gave rise to the #MeToo movement in which hundreds of women have publicly accused powerful men in business, government and entertainment of misconduct.
Weinstein arrived at the station house at about 11.30am GMT wearing a dark jacket over a blue sweater and white open-collared shirt and dark denim jeans, carrying three thick books under his right arm, including what appeared to be a biography of Elia Kazan, the director of such classic Hollywood films as On the Waterfront and A Streetcar Named Desire. Police officers escorted him inside as scores of journalists pushed up against barricades for pictures, while three helicopters hovered overhead.
Weinstein was expected to be charged with raping one woman and forcing another to perform oral sex on him, the New York Times reported, citing unidentified law enforcement officials.
Weinstein has denied having non-consensual sex with anyone.
Weinstein’s spokesman Juda Engelmayer and his lawyer Benjamin Brafman both declined to comment to Reuters on Thursday on the imminent charges.
The charges follow a months-long investigation that involved the Manhattan district attorney’s office.
The victim in the rape case had not been identified, the Times reported, but Weinstein would be charged with first-degree and third-degree rape. The other case involved allegations by Lucia Evans, a former aspiring actress who told the New Yorker that Weinstein forced her to give him oral sex in 2004, the Times reported.