Harvey Weinstein might be coronavirus-free now, but virus-related delays in the legal system are keeping him from going to Los Angeles for his California sex-assault case. “The virus has delayed the processing of the extradition paperwork,” the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said in a statement Tuesday. “There is no time estimate on when he will appear in a Los Angeles courtroom.”
L.A. prosecutors had said on March 23 that their office “initiated its request to New York for the temporary custody of defendant Weinstein … to bring him to Los Angeles County to face rape and sexual-assault charges.”
Weinstein, who was sentenced on March 11 to 23 years in prison following his conviction in Manhattan on first-degree criminal sexual act and third-degree rape charges, presently faces charges L.A. for alleged incidents involving three women. In April, he was charged with a sexual-assault count; prosecutors said he “unlawfully touch[ed] an intimate part” of a woman at a Beverly Hills hotel in May 2010.
On January 6, just one day before his New York City trial started, L.A. prosecutors charged him with one count each of forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, and sexual penetration by use of force for allegedly pushing his way into a woman’s hotel room on February 18, 2013, and then forcibly raping her. Weinstein was also charged with one count of sexual battery by restraint for allegedly assaulting actress Lauren Young on February 19, 2013. Young claimed Weinstein trapped her in his hotel suite’s bathroom and then touched her breast without consent. She was one of the three women who testified at his New York trial about previous, uncharged “bad acts.”
This isn’t the first time the pandemic has stirred up drama in Weinstein’s ongoing legal saga. After Weinstein was taken to Wende Correctional Facility, a maximum-security state prison near Buffalo, numerous reports said that he had contracted the coronavirus. His rep, Juda Engelmayer, recently said that Weinstein neither had symptoms nor tested positive for COVID-19 prior to being transferred upstate from New York City. Engelmayer told Vulture this afternoon that Weinstein’s team plans on fighting his extradition to L.A.
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