Harvey Weinstein case: Jury finds former mogul guilty 3 of 7 counts of sexual assault and rape at Los Angeles trial

LOS ANGELES — A jury found Harvey Weinstein guilty on three of seven counts in a count of sexual assault and rape in Los Angeles.

Weinstein was found guilty of forced oral copulation, foreign object sexual penetration, and violent rape. The jury returned a not-guilty verdict in one count of sexual assault by restraint and was deadlocked in three other counts.

The jury is expected to return to the courtroom on Tuesday to hear arguments about special findings in the case.

The 70-year-old former film mogul was on trial for two counts of rape and five counts of sexual assault. The indictments include allegations by four women from 2005 to 2013. The jury heard 49 witnesses over more than four weeks of testimony.

Weinstein is already serving a 23-year sentence on one conviction in New York and could have been sentenced to more than 60 years in California if he had been convicted on all charges.

The jury received the case on December 2 and deliberated for nine days over a period of more than two weeks after a month-long trial.

Regardless of the outcome, Weinstein will not be walking free. He still has more than 20 years in prison in New York after being convicted there of rape and sexual assault.

Prosecutors asked the jury to believe the accounts of the four women, each of whom made dramatic and emotional statements about the allegations.

“You have irrefutable, overwhelming evidence as to the nature of this man and what he did to these women,” Assistant District Attorney Paul Thompson told jurors in his rebuttal to the defense’s closing argument a day earlier.

Prosecutor compares Weinstein to wolf, predator in closing argument

Weinstein’s attorneys emphasized the lack of physical evidence in the case and asked the jury to put aside the emotional impact of the testimony to focus on the changes some of the women’s stories had undergone in their conversations with authorities.

In his closing speech, Weinstein’s defense attorney, Alan Jackson, stressed the lack of physical evidence of the attacks, none of which was reported to authorities until years later.

He told jurors two of the accusers clearly lied, and the other two reworded “transactional” and “100% consensual” sexual acts with Weinstein as attacks after he became a magnet for the #MeToo movement in 2017.

“Regret is not rape,” Jackson said.

Weinstein pleaded not guilty and denied engaging in non-consensual sex.

The trial came just after the fifth anniversary of the blockbuster stories about Weinstein that made him a lightning rod for the #MeToo movement.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

https://abc7.com/harvey-weinstein-los-angeles-trial-rape-sexual-assault/12591152/ Harvey Weinstein case: Jury finds former mogul guilty 3 of 7 counts of sexual assault and rape at Los Angeles trial

Laura Coffey

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