More than two years after his rape conviction, Harvey Weinstein is granted an appeal

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Once-powerful Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein was appealed Wednesday, more than two years after being convicted of third-degree rape and other crimes.

The ruling, from New York State of Appeals Chief Judge Janet DiFiore, paves the way for pleadings in the entire court next year, a court spokesman said.

Weinstein’s attorney, Arthur Aidala, said his client was grateful for the decision, which Aidala said “recognized the unique legal issues in this case.”

Harvey Weinstein arrives at New York Criminal Court for his trial for sexual assault in New York City on February 20, 2020.Jeenah Moon / Reuters

“We hope that the entire court will find that Mr Weinstein has not been given a fair trial and will reverse his conviction,” Aidala said.

Weinstein again said on Wednesday that he is innocent.

“I am so grateful to my lawyers for working hard and smart on this,” he said in a statement through his spokesman. “Their hard work will eventually help me prove my innocence.”

A spokeswoman for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office declined to comment when asked for a response to the appeal’s award.

The full court can either affirm the decision of the lower court and uphold the conviction, or reverse the decision and withdraw its conviction. The court can also order a new trial or change his conviction by upholding some charges and dropping others.

Weinstein was convicted in February 2020 on two charges of committing a first-degree and third-degree criminal sexual act. He was sentenced to 23 years in a New York state prison.

The conviction stemmed from accusations made by two women, former aspiring actress Jessica Mann and a former “Project Runway” model, Mimi Haley.

Weinstein was acquitted of two counts of sexual assault by predators, a crime that carried a possible life sentence, and one count of first-degree rape.

More than 80 women accused the Oscar-winning producer of sexual assault and harassment. In Los Angeles last year, he was indicted on 11 charges of rape and assault. He pleaded not guilty to the alleged crimes.

Weinstein is currently in a Los Angeles jail awaiting trial, scheduled for October.

Doug Wigdor, a lawyer who represented Weinstein’s victims at the trial, said he was confident the appeal would ultimately be dismissed.

“I represented eight Weinstein clients, including two who testified at the trial,” Wigdor said in a statement on Wednesday. “Weinstein is a desperate man, but we are confident that the New York Supreme Court will eventually dismiss his appeal…and sentence.”

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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