Harvey Weinstein 'Me Too' conviction overturned in landmark ruling

Harvey Weinstein

The film producer was handed a 23-year prison sentence

Olivia Gantzer

By Olivia Gantzer

Published: 25/04/2024

- 14:15

Updated: 25/04/2024

- 15:29

The reversal of the conviction was announced on Thursday

Harvey Weinstein's 2020 conviction on felony sex crime charges has been overturned by New York's highest court.

The New York Court of Appeals found the judge who presided over Weinstein's case made mistakes which meant the US film producer didn't have a "fair trial".

The shock ruling came following a 4-3 decision in which it was deemed the judge made an error that allowed women to testify about alleged sexual assaults against the 72-year-old who weren't part of the charges against him.

Weinstein was given a 23-year sentence for two attacks which took place in 2006 and 2013 and have now been overturned by the court ruling.

He remains in jail due to his 2022 conviction of rape in Los Angeles, which saw him sentenced to 16 years.

The court determined Weinstein, who had been one of the most powerful men in Hollywood, was not tried solely on the crimes he was charged with, but for past behaviour.

Harvey Weinstein

Weinstein was found guilty of two of five felony counts in 2020


It will now be up to the Manhattan district attorney, Alvin L. Bragg, to decide whether a retrial of Weinstein will take place.

The film producer was initially convicted of criminal sex acts for forcibly performing oral sex on a film production assistant in 2006 as well as rape in the third degree on an aspiring actress in 2013.

2017 saw a flood of allegations against the powerful Hollywood figure, and accusers could now be forced to relive the experience in the witness box.

Weinstein denied the charges against him, arguing his relations with the women accusing him were consensual.

Harvey Weinstein

Weinstein's conviction has been overturned


More than 80 women spoke out against the Oscar-winning Hollywood mogul with allegations of sexual assault and harassment.

The reversal of the conviction comes as the second major #MeToo setback in the last couple of years after Bill Cosby's sexual assault conviction was overturned by a US Supreme Court.

Weinstein's had been one of the most prominent in the #MeToo movement, which saw a huge campaign of awareness of sexual harassment and rape culture.

“It is an abuse of judicial discretion to permit untested allegations of nothing more than bad behavior that destroys a defendant’s character but sheds no light on their credibility as related to the criminal charges,” Judge Jenny Rivera wrote on behalf of the majority, according to The Telegraph.

Harvey Weinstein

Whether Weinstein gets a retrial will be down to the deciding of the Manhattan district attorney


Mr. Weinstein’s lawyer Arthur Aidala told the publication: "This is not just a victory for Mr. Weinstein but for every criminal defendant in the state of New York, and we compliment the Court of Appeals for upholding the most basic principles that a criminal defendant should have in a trial."

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