Harvey Weinstein faces additional sexual battery charge in California case

In February, the disgraced movie producer was convicted in New York of rape in a landmark trial and sentenced to 23 years in prison.

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By Minyvonne Burke

Disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein, who was convicted in New York of rape in a landmark trial and sentenced to 23 years in prison, faces an additional sexual assault charge in his California case, prosecutors announced Friday.

The charge stems from an incident that occurred at a hotel in Beverly Hills in May 2010, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said in a press release.

Weinstein, 68, was charged by California authorities in January on multiple charges including forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, sexual penetration by use of force and sexual battery by restraint. Those charges stem from two separate incidents in 2013.

The case was amended to add a felony sexual battery by restraint.

Prosecutors said the victim in the new charge spoke to detectives in 2019 and in March gave them information confirming that the assault took place within the statute of limitations, according to the press release.

“We are continuing to build and strengthen our case,” district attorney Jackie Lacey said in a statement. “As we gather corroborating evidence, we have reached out to other possible sexual assault victims. If we find new evidence of a previously unreported crime, as we did here, we will investigate and determine whether additional criminal charges should be filed.”

Weinstein faces up to 29 years in state prison if convicted in the amended complaint. His attorney could not immediately be reached on Friday.

In February, a New York jury convicted Weinstein of third-degree rape of Jessica Mann, a former aspiring actress, as well as a count of a criminal sexual act in the first degree against Mimi Haley, a former "Project Runway" production assistant.

He was found not guilty on two counts of predatory sexual assault, which each carried a sentence of up to life in prison. He was also acquitted on a count of first-degree rape against Mann.

Weinstein has denied all allegations of nonconsensual sex and pleaded not guilty in the New York case. His lawyers have said they will appeal the conviction.

The once highly-respected producer has been at Wende Correctional Facility near Buffalo, New York, since his transfer from Rikers Island. Last month it was announced that he tested positive for the coronavirus.

Lacey said it is unclear when Weinstein will be transferred to Los Angeles County.