Sunday 22 April 2018

Harvey Weinstein accuser hits The Weinstein Company with lawsuit

Actress Dominique Huett claims the company knew of Harvey Weinstein’s alleged “sexual misconduct”.

Harvey Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein

By Joe Nerssessian, Press Association

Dominique Huett is suing The Weinstein Company after she became the latest actress to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault.

The Blue Bloods star hit the production company – founded by Weinstein along with his brother Bob – with a five million US dollar (£3.8 million) lawsuit on Tuesday.

In the suit Huett alleges the film producer forcibly performed oral sex on her before masturbating until he reached orgasm.

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Harvey Weinstein and Gwyneth Paltrow with Oscars won for Shakespeare In Love in 1999 (PA)

The negligence complaint alleges The Weinstein Company’s (TWC) “executives, officers and employers had actual knowledge of Weinstein’s repeated acts of sexual misconduct with women”.

The board of directors, including Bob, were “aware of Weinstein’s pattern of using his power to coerce and force young actresses to engage in sexual acts with him,” Huett’s lawyer Jeff Herman says in the lawsuit.

After the initial allegations were reported, Bob said he was “mortified and disgusted by my brother’s actions”.

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Bob Weinstein

Harvey Weinstein resigned from the board of directors of TWC after being accused by around 50 women of sexual harassment and assault. He had previously been sacked him from his role as chairman.

Through his spokesman, he has “unequivocally denied” allegations of non-consensual sex after three actresses accused him of rape in an article in The New Yorker.

Huett’s lawsuit alleges the pair had met in the bar of The Peninsula hotel in Beverly Hills, California in November 2010 to discuss her acting career before Weinstein asked if she had ever had a boob job and to show him her breasts.

She claims Weinstein invited her to his room to continue their meeting, at which point he is accused of going to the bathroom and returning in a bathrobe and asking Huett for a massage.

She initially said no before ultimately complying “with his demands and performed the massage”, the lawsuit reads.

It adds that subsequently Weinstein requested to perform oral sex on Huett leaving her “shocked and alarmed”.

It continues: “Again, Weinstein displayed persistence and would not take ‘no’ for an answer. Weinstein initiated and Plaintiff froze as Weinstein removed her clothing and performed oral sex on her.”

“After performing oral sex on Plaintiff, Weinstein masturbated in front of Plaintiff until he reached orgasm,” it alleges.

He then offered to secure her a role on Project Runway, Huett said.

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The lawsuit also alleges Weinstein would use “honeypots” – female TWC employees who would join meetings before being dismissed to lure actresses into a false sense of security.

It comes after an aspiring production assistant alleged Weinstein forcibly performed oral sex on her while she was on her period.

Mimi Haleyi said on Tuesday that she was assaulted by Weinstein in what appeared to be a child’s bedroom in his New York City apartment in 2006 when she was in her 20s.

“I told him ‘no, no, no’. But he insisted,” Ms Haleyi told a press conference in New York.

Weinstein is being investigated by the Metropolitan Police after women made five allegations against him spanning from the late 1980s to 2015. Police in the US are also investigating the producer.

Press Association

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