Wicklow villages get the Disney treatment as filming for ‘Disenchanted’ officially gets underway
Wicklow villages get the Disney treatment as filming for ‘Disenchanted’ officially gets underway

Sarah Finnan

#MattieBan: Matt LeBlanc reacts to the Irish uncle memes
#MattieBan: Matt LeBlanc reacts to the Irish uncle memes

Sarah Finnan

Book gift ideas for every kind of reader
Book gift ideas for every kind of reader

Amanda Kavanagh

Something to do in lockdown? Sort out the photos at home
Something to do in lockdown? Sort out the photos at home

Amanda Kavanagh

3 dreamy waterside homes for €200,000 around the country
3 dreamy waterside homes for €200,000 around the country

Megan Burns

20 beautiful destination restaurants to visit in Ireland this summer
20 beautiful destination restaurants to visit in Ireland this summer

Sarah Finnan

Long Covid: ‘I never expected chronic fatigue and its impact on my family’
Long Covid: ‘I never expected chronic fatigue and its impact on my family’

Jennifer McShane

How to navigate the first tentative steps towards separation and divorce
How to navigate the first tentative steps towards separation and divorce

Amanda Cassidy

True crime documentary ‘The Jinx’ resumes in real life (sort of)
True crime documentary ‘The Jinx’ resumes in real life (sort of)

Jennifer McShane

Marianne Smyth, aka @smythsisters, on summer pieces you’ll wear again and again
Marianne Smyth, aka @smythsisters, on summer pieces you’ll wear again and again

Holly O'Neill

Image / Editorial

Harvey Weinstein found guilty of rape and sexual assault


by Jennifer McShane
24th Feb 2020
blank

The disgraced Harvey Weinstein has been convicted of two counts of rape and sexual assault at a trial in New York. It almost seems incredulous; no doubt Weinstein and his legal team presumed he’d be let off the hook with nothing but a slap on the wrist. This is the long-awaited first step into the preditor finally facing accountability for his crimes


A jury of seven men and five women at the New York supreme court took five days to reach a verdict which is that he is guilty of a criminal sexual act in the first degree and rape in the third degree.

He had denied the allegations and said any sexual encounters were consensual.

Weinstein’s decades-long abuse of power is the reason the #MeToo movement gained momentum.

He is a symbol of the way influential men can abuse their power, unchecked and even aided by those around them. Hollywood has a history of protecting these men. Of shaming their victims into silence. This was not the case on Monday.

Related: If You Want To Know What Rape Culture Is, Look No Further Than The Weinstein Scandal

 

A complex case

All along there have been whispers of an acquittal, mainly due to the challenges of the case. Over 100 women accused him, but he stood trial in New York for assaulting only two, former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006 and raping Jessica Mann, then an aspiring actress, in 2013, and there was little physical evidence to go on.

Weinstein’s defense had framed the case as putting Me Too itself on trial, demanding that the jury rejected the “story [prosecutors] spun where women had no free will,” claiming that the women who took the stand for hours of testimony and cross-examination were doing so to get ahead in Hollywood.

Waging a war on the #MeToo movement as a tactic, didn’t work.

It’s true both women had complicated associations with the producer but the jury accepted the complex set of facts prosecutors laid out: that they could be raped or sexually assaulted by Weinstein on one day and be on “friendly” terms with him another and consent to sex with him — out of fear or denial, or out of deference to Weinstein’s economic power over them.

Related: ‘The sheriff in town’: Why the new Harvey Weinstein documentary is a must-watch about sexual assault

The verdict is also a landmark in more ways than one because it dismisses this notion of what a victim of sexual assault and violence “should” look like.

Repeat behaviour

Prosecutors also called several other accusers as witnesses. One of these women, Sopranos actress Annabella Sciorra, told jurors Weinstein came into her apartment one winter night in 1993 or 1994 and raped her. Three other women – costume designer Dawn Dunning, model Tarale Wulff and actress Lauren Young – testified that they were enticed into meeting Weinstein for professional reasons and then groped or raped.

“Old” testimonies generally aren’t allowed used in such trails but an exception was made as they wanted to show the jury that Weinstein had a pattern of repeat behaviour.

The jury acquitted Weinstein on two counts of predatory sexual assault, which carried a potential life sentence, and the first degree rape of Mann.

He faces up to 25 years in prison and is to be sentenced on March 11th. His lawyers requested that he be kept in a prison infirmary while awaiting sentencing.

Reports then surfaced that Los Angeles prosecutors would move forward with their separate case against Weinstein.

Main photograph: @Complex


RelatedPriyanka Chopra defends wearing Georgina Chapman’s Marchesa line, but should she have to?

Also Read

Sleep cycle during Covid-19
EDITORIAL
How to get your sleep schedule back on track during lockdown, according to a sleep technologist

Many of us are struggling to maintain a healthy sleep cycle...

By Katie Byrne

Women with MS who take medication, especially immunosuppressants, cannot become pregnant unless they come off medication.
premium HEALTH & WELLNESS, REAL-LIFE STORIES
I had to weigh up the possibility of losing my mind against losing my future children

Holograms of the children she may never have dance across Dearbhla Crosses' mind as an MS diagnosis and Covid-19 are unwelcome reminders of her biological clock ticking.

By Dearbhla Crosse

rings
EDITORIAL
Rings that help you draw attention to your newly manicured nails

Rings to help you flaunt your fresh mani? Non-negotiables. Nail...

By Sarah Finnan

Britta Baranowsky The Flowerfield
EDITORIAL
Happy World Bee Day: These are the best bee-friendly flowers to plant right now

Attracting bees to your outdoor patch is a cinch, with...

By Amanda Kavanagh

Has society become more tolerant of the idea of dating interracially?
premium IMAGE WRITES, REAL-LIFE STORIES, RELATIONSHIPS
Interracial dating: “People kept asking ‘where is she from?'”

With diversity on the rise, what struggles do interracial couples continue to face today? Filomena Kaguako speaks to three couples about their experiences.

By Filomena Kaguako

blank
BREAKING STORIES
Supermodel Naomi Campbell becomes a mum at 50

The first-time mum shared the news on social media today....

By Jennifer McShane

blank
EDITORIAL
You don’t have to love football to have been affected by the tragic scenes at the Finland Denmark game

There were heartbreaking scenes as footballer Christian Eriksen was given...

By Amanda Cassidy