Harvey Weinstein, the former Hollywood mogul, has been sentenced to 16 years in prison, which is likely to mean he will spend the rest of his life behind bars.
Weinstein was convicted of three counts of rape and sexual assault during his Los Angeles trial, which concluded two months ago.
The charges were related to an incident involving a European model, who testified that Weinstein had raped her at a hotel in 2013 after the L.A. Italia Film Festival.
Weinstein is already serving a 23-year sentence in New York after being convicted of rape and sexual assault in a separate trial in 2020. Despite his attorneys claiming that he had an unfair trial, Weinstein’s conviction has been upheld.
This news is a reminder that justice can be served, even for powerful people who have committed terrible crimes. It is also a warning to others that they will not be above the law if they commit similar offenses.
Thursday’s sentencing effectively means that Harvey Weinstein, who will be turning 71 next month, will spend the remainder of his life behind bars. This marks a shocking downfall for the former Hollywood mogul and Oscar winner, who once held immense power in the entertainment industry.
Although Weinstein’s lawyers are still fighting for his life, a judge in Los Angeles rejected their motion for a new trial with a new jury. In New York, the Court of Appeals, the highest court in the state, has agreed to hear Weinstein’s appeal to possibly overturn his 2020 conviction for sex crimes.
During Weinstein’s Los Angeles trial, which took place from October to December 2022, prosecutors portrayed him as a predator who used his power to lure and attack women in hotel rooms under the guise of business meetings or auditions. His defense, however, argued that the women engaged in “transactional sex” with Weinstein because of his influence in the entertainment industry.
Weinstein initially faced 11 charges in Los Angeles, but four charges were dismissed during the trial. Ultimately, the jury deliberated on seven charges and found him guilty on three of them, all relating to Jane Doe #1. They were split on the charges involving two other accusers, Lauren Young and Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and the judge declared a mistrial on those charges. The court has not yet indicated whether they will be retried.
This news serves as a reminder that no one is above the law, even those who hold great power and influence.
Weinstein has been accused by more than 100 women who have publicly come forward with allegations of sexual assault, abuse and harassment that have spanned decades.
His monumental fall was the fuse the ignited #MeToo in 2017, and the story of his survivors coming forward even inspired a major studio film, “She Said,” which was released in theaters last year. Weinstein has consistently maintained his innocence, denying any accusations of rape or assault, and his legal team has repeatedly stated that their client has unfairly been painted as the poster boy of the #MeToo movement.