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Kevin Spacey appears in London court to faces sexual assault charges

Spacey, 63, has denied allegations of offenses alleged to have taken place between 2001 and 2013.

LONDON — Kevin Spacey appeared at a London court Wednesday morning for the beginning of a weekslong trial in which the Oscar-winning actor faces a dozen sexual offense charges.

The disgraced actor faces charges over offenses alleged to have taken place between 2001 and 2013. They include indecent and sexual assaults and an offence of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent, which carries a maximum punishment of life imprisonment.

Spacey, 63, has denied all the allegations against him.

The judge, Mr. Justice Mark Wall, told the 14 jurors selected in Spacey’s marathon trial that they must not let media coverage or the defendant’s fame influence their thoughts.

“Many of you know his name or have seen his films. That doesn’t disqualify you from sitting on this jury,” he said.

Criminal trials in England normally use 12 jurors, but two more have been chosen in case someone realizes they know an alleged victim or someone else connected with the case.

The judge said the trial was expected to officially commence Friday morning.

What to know about the trial

  • Spacey appeared calm as he entered London's Southwark Crown Court on Wednesday morning.
  • The disgraced actor faces 12 sex offense charges, all of which he denies, relating to events that are alleged to have taken place from 2001 to 2013.
  • Spacey first pleaded not guilty last July to five of those charges, four of sexual assault and one of causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent.
  • In January he pleaded not guilty to seven more sex offense charges, denying a number of alleged sexual assaults against one man from 2001 to 2004.

The trial judge, Mr. Justice Wall, told the 14 jurors selected in Spacey’s marathon trial that they cannot let media coverage or the defendant’s fame influence their thoughts.

“Many of you know his name or have seen his films. That doesn’t disqualify you from sitting on this jury,” he said.

Criminal trials in England normally use 12 jurors, but two more have been chosen in this trial in case someone realizes they know an alleged victim or someone else connected with the case.

The judge also confirmed that trial won’t start properly until Friday morning. 

A court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook shows Spacey appearing at Southwark Crown Court in London today.

Two-time Oscar winner Kevin Spacey walked into a London courtroom Wednesday to face trial on charges of sexually assaulting four men as long as two decades ago. (Elizabeth Cook/PA via AP)
Elizabeth Cook / AP

Spacey stood in the dock to hear the 12 charges against him, a list that took several minutes for a court clerk to read out.

The charges relate to alleged sexual assault and indecent assault against four men between 2001 and 2013, including one count of causing someone to engage in sexual activity involving penetration against their consent, in 2008, which carries a potential life sentence. 

Spacey reenters courtroom

Spacey has just re-entered the courtroom.

The actor sat on one of the lawyers’ benches, not in the dock.

Trial expected to last more than 4 weeks, will have alternate jurors

The trial is now expected to last more than four weeks.

It is also expected to have alternate jurors due to the foreseen extension.

Spacey will continue to be granted unconditional bail.

Spacey enters courtroom

Kevin Spacey entered the courtroom at 10.31 a.m. and walked into the dock, the central area where criminal defendants sit in English trials.

Wearing a dark blue suit, light blue shirt and pink tie he nodded to his defense counsel and took his seat, before waiting patiently for the proceedings to begin.

After the judge, Mr. Justice Mark Wall, came in, he rose to confirm his full name: Kevin Spacey Fowler.

The trial, expected to last at least four weeks and will test 12 charges against Spacey, will hear a mountain of evidence and have to go through many legal formalities and technical processes. There could be a lot of waiting for him. 

The trial was expected to begin at around 10 a.m. local time (5 a.m. ET), but it does not appear to have gotten underway just yet.

In the minutes before 10 a.m., reporters were still lined up to get into the courtroom.

Media gather outside Southwark Crown Court in London as actor Kevin Spacey appears on Wednesday, June 28, 2023.
Patrick Smith / NBC News

The world’s media has descended on Southwark Crown Court for the first day of Kevin Spacey’s trial — a full hour before the hearing was due to start at 10 a.m. (5 a.m. ET).

Photographers, camera crews and reporters were all hoping to catch a glimpse of the 63-year-old Oscar winner.

Photo: Spacey team arrives at court to awaiting media throng

The actor was flanked by a team of people as he arrived at Southwark Crown Court in London on Wednesday morning.

The Oscar-winning US Actor is charged with 12 counts of sexually assaulting four men in the UK between 2005 and 2013.
Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

What are the charges Spacey is facing?

Spacey faces 12 sex offense charges relating to events that are alleged to have taken place from 2001 to 2013.

The actor first pleaded not guilty last July to five of those charges, four of sexual assault and one of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent. The latter charge which carries a maximum punishment of life imprisonment.

In January he pleaded not guilty to seven more sex offense charges, denying a number of alleged sexual assaults against one man from 2001 to 2004.

The British judge, Mark Wall, had agreed to join the seven-count indictment to an earlier five-count indictment.

Kevin Spacey appears calm as he arrives at London court

Kevin Spacey appeared calm as he arrived at London's Southwark Crown Court Wednesday morning for the start of a four-week trial in which the Oscar-winning actor faces a dozen sexual offence charges.

Kevin Spacey On Trial For Sex Offences
Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

Spacey, 63, has denied all the allegations.

The disgraced actor faces charges over offences alleged to have taken place between 2001 and 2013. They include indecent and sexual assaults and an offence of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent, which carries a maximum punishment of life imprisonment.