Procedural error: Court overturns verdict against Weinstein

New York's Supreme Court held that women were admissible as witnesses in cases that did not go to trial. “We conclude that the trial court erred in allowing evidence of uncharged, premeditated sexual conduct against persons other than the plaintiffs of the underlying crimes,” the judge wrote.

A majority of the appeals court ruled that the error was compounded by cross-examining Judge Weinstein, which portrayed him in an “extremely prejudicial” light. “The remedy for these egregious errors is a new trial,” the court said Thursday.

Witnesses must provide evidence of recurring patterns

The hotly contested investigation focused primarily on two allegations: that Weinstein allegedly forced oral sex on production assistant Mimi Haley in 2006, and that he sexually assaulted current hairstylist Jessica Mann in 2013. In fact, the prosecution in the case, which received worldwide attention, relied on several witnesses who accused Weinstein of sexual assault, but who were not part of the case. The prosecution wants to use it to show that Weinstein's actions follow a pattern of repetition.

Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison in 2020 for rape and sexual assault. Another criminal trial in Los Angeles added 16 years to the sentence. According to the New York Times newspaper, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg must now decide whether to open a new case against Weinstein. It was unclear early Thursday what impact the ruling would have on Weinstein, who remains in prison in New York state. He will not be released because of the conviction in the second California trial.

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Close decision

The judgment of the Supreme Court was delivered by a margin of three to four votes. With the ruling, “the Court undoes the steady progress that survivors of sexual violence have made in our criminal justice system,” wrote one of the justices who voted against the decision announced Thursday.

The trial was a milestone in legal history. The allegations against the producer, published by the New York Times and New Yorker magazine in the fall of 2017, marked the beginning of the #MeToo movement. Since 2017, more than 80 women have publicly accused Weinstein of sexual assault.

APA/AFP/Johannes Eisele

Weinstein at the hearing in New York

Further punishment in 2022

In 2022, another investigation in Los Angeles found Weinstein guilty of sex crimes. He was found guilty of three counts, including rape. He was acquitted on one count, but disagreed on three others.

The allegations came from four women between 2004 and 2013. Among the plaintiffs is Jennifer Seibel, the current wife of California Governor Gavin Newsom. Most of the attacks reportedly took place at hotels in Beverly Hills.

A powerful Hollywood mogul

Born into a wealthy family in Queens, New York City in 1952, Weinstein was once a rich and powerful Hollywood mogul whose company produced hit films such as “The English Patient,” “Pulp Fiction,” “Good Will Hunting” and “Gangs.” New York” and won Oscars for “Shakespeare in Love”.

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