World

Harvey Weinstein’s lawyers clash with accusers at trial

LOS ANGELES –

A lawyer for Harvey Weinstein said on Thursday that a change in a masseur’s account of a 2010 sexual assault by the former movie mogul meant she fabricated the details, while she asserts that overcoming trauma has drawn more accurate memories.

Weinstein attorney Mark Werksman pointed to chronological discrepancies in the stories she told police and prosecutors in 2019 and 2020, in her testimony before a grand jury last year, and in her words in the witness stand on Wednesday, when she said Weinstein trapped her in the bathroom, masturbated in front of her and groped her breasts after hiring her for a massage in a Beverly hotel room His hills.

“Do you think your memory is better now than it was three years ago?” Werksman asked.

“Yes,” she replied. At another point, she said, “My memory was foggy then, but I remember everything now.”

The woman said discussions about the assault with friends, authorities, therapists and others brought clarity and forced her to come to terms with difficult details she had buried. in memory.

Werksman asked if the chats represent an effort to “build consensus.”

The woman insisted that was not the case.

“The more I talked about it, the more I remembered the trauma that had happened to me,” she said. “I’ve been blocking it for too long.”

The woman brought to court by Jane Doe. The Associated Press usually does not name people who say they have been sexually abused.

Weinstein was charged with restrained sex for the incident, one of 11 counts of sexual assault involving five women he charged at his trial in Los Angeles. He has pleaded not guilty and denies engaging in any non-consensual sex. He is serving a 23-year prison sentence for one crime in New York.

Werksman paid particular attention to whether Weinstein touched her above or below her clothes, suggesting her story evolves suspiciously over time including skin-to-skin contact at his request. California law for sexual activity.

“Didn’t you change your story from ‘it didn’t happen at all’, to ‘I’m 95% sure’ to ‘I’m 100% sure’ so they could criminally prosecute Mr. Weinstein?” Werksman asked.

“No,” she said.

“Your story is like the US economy, eight percent inflation, right?” Werksman said, though the judge dismissed the question after objecting.

On Wednesday, she testified that she was embarrassed and humiliated by allowing herself to be alone with Weinstein on multiple occasions, including two more massages, when she said he had done it. similar unwanted sexual behavior.

The defense captures this issue during cross-examination.

“He called for another massage, and you said “buzz off creeps” and hung up, right?” Werksman asked.

“No,” said the woman.

“No, Werksman replies,” you schedule another massage. “

During the first massage, Weinstein and the woman discussed her writing a book on her techniques for the publishing arm of his film company, Miramax.

Werksman suggests that the woman made a consensual sexual favor for Weinstein for a chance to be published.

“You’re pursuing a book deal because that’s the end of a bargain when you’re having an affair with Mr. Weinstein, aren’t you?” he asks.

“Not exactly,” she said.

The woman said the book was Weinstein’s idea, and while she was intrigued and engaged for months by email with his staff, the decision to scrap it was mutual.



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