Former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, 67, has been sentenced to 23 years in prison for sex crimes. Judge James Burke announced the sentence on Wednesday in a New York court, about two weeks after a jury found Weinstein guilty of rape and sexual assault. The maximum sentence would have been 29 years in prison. Weinstein appeared in court to announce the verdict in a wheelchair.
The public prosecutor had previously explicitly requested a severe punishment. Weinstein had abused women for decades and has so far shown no regrets. The defence had demanded a mild punishment – and had already announced that it wanted to go into revision.
A jury had found Weinstein guilty of rape and sexual assault in late February. But he was not guilty on the two most serious charges of “predatory sexual assault”. Even more severe charge of rape. The moving process was primarily about two allegations.
Weinstein has forced production assistant Mimi Haleyi to have oral sex in 2006 and raped today’s hairdresser Jessica Mann in 2013.
After the guilty verdict, the tainted Weinstein had taken to a hospital and then to Rikers Island prison in the metropolis of New York. Now he is put in a jail in New York State.
Me Too Movement
More than 80 women accuse Weinstein of sexual assault. The accusations against the producer – published in the fall of 2017 by the “New York Times” and the magazine “New Yorker” – were the beginning of the MeToo movement.
Around the world, women and some men recognized their own stories in those of the alleged Weinstein victims. They started collecting these stories under the buzzword “Me Too”. The MeToo Movement had celebrated the verdict against Weinstein as a milestone. But also criticized not to find him guilty on all charges.
The legal struggles have not ended for the ex-producer even after the trial in New York. In Los Angeles, he has also charged with rape and sexual assault. There could also be a process there. Apart from that, his lawyers largely negotiate with civilian plaintiffs for compensation in private.