Attorneys for one of Harvey Weinstein‘s alleged sexual misconduct victims say they will do everything in their power to oppose a tentative $44 million settlement agreed to in May by attorneys representing claims against Weinstein, his company and former associates.
Attorneys Douglas H. Wigdor and Kevin Mintzer, who represent an alleged Weinstein victim, released a statement saying “under the proposed agreement, every insurer of the Weinstein Company will be completely released from liability, so that victims who wish to pursue their claims rather than take part in this sham settlement will be guaranteed to receive nothing from the Company or its insurers. This of course sets a very dangerous precedent.”
They add, “In order to participate in this proposed settlement, a victim must not only agree to release her claims against the Company, but also against Harvey and Robert Weinstein and every current and former director of the Weinstein Company. It is unconscionable that anyone would force a rape survivor to enter into a settlement agreement rather than having her day in court. We will do everything in our power to oppose this unjust agreement.”
The attorneys say exact terms of the proposed settlement have been internationally withheld from them, but “we have learned that it is a windfall for the insurance companies, Harvey and Robert Weinstein, the former Directors of the Weinstein Company and their big firm lawyers, and class counsel who will pocket millions of dollars as part of the deal.”
A judge needs to approve the proposed settlement.
Criminal case to go ahead
The settlement has nothing to do with the criminal case.
Weinstein is accused of raping a woman in a New York hotel room in 2013 and forcibly performing oral sex on another woman at his Manhattan apartment in 2006.
He faces two counts of predatory sexual assault, one count of criminal sexual act in the first degree, and one count each of first-degree rape and third-degree rape. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges and vigorously denied all of the allegations of rape.
While his charges relate to the two women, more than 80 others have publicly accused him of wrongdoing ranging from unwanted advances to rape.
His trial is set to begin on September 9.