Harvey Weinstein turns himself in to police in sex abuse case

Harvey Weinstein hangs his head in court after he turns himself into NYPD

Seven months after the accusations destroyed his career and catalyzed the #MeToo movement, the once-powerhouse movie producer turned himself in to face the charges.

Weinstein has been accused of rape, assault and other forms of sexual misconduct. "This defendant used his position, money and power to lure young women into situations where he could violate them sexually", prosecutor Joan Illuzzi told the judge.

Weinstein flinched as he heard the description. "We believe that they are not factually supported by the evidence", he said, adding that his client is doing "as well as can be expected when you are accused of a crime that you [strongly] deny having committed".

Weinstein's attorney, Benjamin Brafman, said to reporters on Friday that he plans to plead not guilty - and his legal team will fight to dismiss the charges.

In an earlier interview with ABC's Amy Robach, McGowan she wanted to see Weinstein behind bars because "we were sentenced to a prison, we were sentenced to years of it before anybody believed us".

Brafman also said his job "is not to defend behavior". He left through a courthouse back door less than three hours after his arrest.

In the wake of that article, the Manhattan DA's Office ultimately launched an investigation into Weinstein based on separate incidents, which led to the calling of a grand jury.

Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein has been charged in the U.S. with rape, sex abuse and other crimes against two women. Asked "What can you say?" he mildly shook his head and softly said "No". "It's whether you committed a criminal act, and Mr Weinstein vigorously denies that".

The alleged victim in the rape case has not been publicly identified, the source said. A court complaint says Weinstein raped her in a Manhattan hotel in 2013.

NEW YORK NY- MAY 25 Harvey Weinstein arrives at the New York Police Department's First Precinct to turn himself in after being served with criminal charges by the Manhattan District Attorney's office
Harvey Weinstein turns himself in to police

"This is an emotional moment".

"After decades of abusing women with impunity, finally, the beginning of the end of Harvey Weinstein's reign of terror", Argento said in a statement to CNN.

The news comes after ET Canada confirmed that Weinstein had surrendered to the NYPD at the 1st precinct before 7.30 a.m.

The charges follow a months-long investigation that involved the Manhattan district attorney's office.

Weinstein arrived early in the morning at the New York Police Department's 1st Precinct in Lower Manhattan, ushered into the station by law enforcement officers as members of the media crowded behind metal barriers.

CNN reported that prosecutors charged Weinstein with first and third-degree rape in one case and first-degree criminal sex act in another case. Another aspiring actress, Mimi Haleyi, said Weinstein forcibly performed oral sex on her in his NY apartment in 2006.

Otherwise, he has been hit by a litany of civil lawsuits and The Weinstein Company - which sacked him - has since filed for bankruptcy.

In March, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo took the extraordinary step of ordering the state's attorney general to investigate whether Vance acted properly in 2015 when he decided not to prosecute Weinstein over a previous allegation of unwanted groping, made by an Italian model.

Police detectives set up a sting where the woman recorded herself confronting Weinstein. It was the first criminal case against Weinstein since the revelations about him erupted last October and sparked the cultural "reckoning" that became the MeToo movement. Investigators decided not to charge him even though there was an audiotape of Mr Weinstein accepting he had touched Ms Battilana's breasts and pledging not to do so again.

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