World

Harvey Weinstein pleads not guilty to sex crime charges in Los Angeles

By Reuters 21 July 2021
Caption
Harvey Weinstein leaves the courtroom at New York City criminal court during his sex crimes trial on January 7, 2020 in New York City. Weinstein, a movie producer whose alleged sexual misconduct helped spark the #MeToo movement, pleaded not-guilty on five counts of rape and sexual assault against two unnamed women and faces a possible life sentence in prison. (Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, July 21 (Reuters) - Former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein pleaded not guilty on Wednesday in Los Angeles to charges of rape and sexual assault, prosecutors said.

Weinstein, 69, arrived at Los Angeles Superior Court for his first appearance there in a wheelchair after being extradited from New York on Tuesday where he was serving 23 years in prison for rape and other sex crimes.

In Los Angeles he faces 11 charges of attacking five women between 2004 to 2013. They include forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, sexual battery by restraint, and sexual penetration by use of force. If convicted, Weinstein could spend the rest of his life in prison.

After entering his not guilty plea through his attorney on Wednesday, Weinstein was ordered to remain in jail until the next hearing on July 29, the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office said in a statement.

Weinstein has denied having nonconsensual sex with anyone and is appealing his New York conviction and sentence.

He had been fighting extradition on medical grounds, citing diabetes and cardiac, back and eyesight problems.

Weinstein was one of the most powerful movie and TV producers in Hollywood before allegations by more than 80 women of sexual misconduct in 2017 led to criminal charges and fueled the wider #MeToo movement.

He co-founded the Miramax film studio, whose hit movies included “Shakespeare in Love” and “Pulp Fiction.” His film studio filed for bankruptcy in March 2018. (Reporting by Lisa Richwine and Jill Serjeant; editing by Grant McCool)

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