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Friday 23 August 2019

'A pathetic, revolting attack' - British actress alleges she was raped by Harvey Weinstein in her home

Lysette Anthony attending the British Soap Awards 2016 at the Hackney Empire, 291 Mare St, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 28, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Soap. Photo credit should read: Matt Crossick/PA Wire
Lysette Anthony attending the British Soap Awards 2016 at the Hackney Empire, 291 Mare St, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 28, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Soap. Photo credit should read: Matt Crossick/PA Wire
Harvey Weinstein
Controversy: Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, pictured with wife Georgina Chapman, stands accused of sexual harassment against several actresses. Photo: Lovekin/WWD/REX/Shutterstock
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

A British actress has revealed she told police Harvey Weinsetin raped her as the organisation behind the Oscars expelled the producer over allegations of sexual abuse.

Lysette Anthony said she had told the Metropolitan Police she was attacked by Weinstein in her London home in the late 80s

Scotland Yard had previously said it had received an allegation of sexual assault without naming the producer.

The Hollyoaks actress' revelation follows several allegations of rape made by actresses in the US against Weinstein, all of which he has strenuously denied.

Harvey Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein

On Saturday some of the film industry's most powerful figures, including Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg and Whoopi Goldberg, voted to expel the film producer from their ranks.

Anthony, 54, told The Sunday Times she met the producer when she starred in 1982 sci-fi film Krull and the alleged assault occurred a few years later.

She said it was a "pathetic, revolting" attack that had left her "disgusted and embarrassed".

She described how Weinstein's "predatory stalking" began when she met him for a drink at his Chelsea home a few years after the film came out, and he grabbed her while he was half undressed but she managed to flee.

However, she says, he turned up at her home at 10am one morning.

"He pushed me inside and rammed me up against the coat rack... and started fumbling at my dressing gown," she told The Sunday Times.

"He was trying to kiss me and shove inside me." The actress pushed him away but he was too heavy. "Finally I just gave up," she said.

On Wednesday Anthony tweeted that she had just reported a historical crime, adding "feel sick... so sad".

The Metropolitan Police said it was passed an allegation of sexual assault by Merseyside Police the same day.

"The allegation will be assessed by officers from Child Abuse and Sexual Offences Command," the force said.

Dozens of actresses, including Hollywood A-listers Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow, have made accusations of sex abuse against the 65-year-old movie mogul over the past 10 days, prompting the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to call an emergency meeting.

In a statement they said the board had "voted well in excess of the required two-thirds majority" to expel Weinstein.

Actress Rose McGowan - one of the first women to accuse Weinstein of sexual harassment and who has since said he raped her - celebrated the Academy's decision with a post on Instagram.

She wrote: "We slay dragons."

Through his spokeswoman, the movie mogul has "unequivocally denied" any allegations of non-consensual sex after three actresses said he had raped them in an article in The New Yorker.

Police in the US are also investigating allegations.

The Academy said they were expelling Weinstein "not simply to separate ourselves from someone who does not merit the respect of his colleagues but also to send a message that the era of wilful ignorance and shameful complicity in sexually predatory behaviour and workplace harassment in our industry is over."

It added: "What's at issue here is a deeply troubling problem that has no place in our society. The board continues to work to establish ethical standards of conduct that all Academy members will be expected to exemplify."

Bafta had already suspended the producer and on Tuesday Weinstein's wife, British designer Georgina Chapman, said she was leaving him.

Weinstein was labelled "sick and depraved" by his brother, Bob Weinstein, with whom he co-founded the companies Miramax and The Weinstein Company, on Saturday.

Bob told The Hollywood Reporter he had been aware his brother was unfaithful to Chapman but did not know "the type of predator that he was".

He added: "I have a brother that's indefensible and crazy. I want him to get the justice that he deserves."

The Writers Guild Of America West issued a statement on Saturday saying it "stands in solidarity" with the women who have spoken out while the Producers Guild announced they would be meeting to consider expelling Weinstein.

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