Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer on Monday challenged his extradition from New York to California, the place the imprisoned film mogul faces rape and sexual assault costs in a newly revealed indictment.
Erie County Court docket Choose Kenneth Case delayed a decision on extradition for Weinstein, 69, who appeared through video from the utmost safety Wende Correctional Facility close to Buffalo, the place he has been held since final spring after being convicted in New York Metropolis of a prison intercourse act and third-degree rape.
Weinstein was charged final yr in California with assaulting 5 girls in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills from 2004 to 2013.
The new indictment, returned by a grand jury on 15 March, comprises the identical 11 counts involving the identical 5 unnamed girls because the earlier prison grievance in opposition to Weinstein, in keeping with an individual with direct information who spoke on situation of anonymity as a result of the indictment stays sealed.
The transfer by prosecutors means skipping a public preliminary listening to on the proof in opposition to Weinstein, and placing him on a quick observe to trial.
Los Angeles prosecutors declined to remark, saying they don’t remark on grand jury issues.
After requests for a “humanitarian” delay of extradition to take care of Weinstein’s medical wants had been rejected at Monday’s New York listening to, defence lawyer Norman Effman argued that as a result of the prison grievance has been changed by the indictment, the preliminary switch request is incomplete.
Case granted his request for one more listening to, which he scheduled for 30 April.
Weinstein maintains his innocence and contends that any sexual exercise was consensual.
“We’re not attempting to keep away from what will occur in California. We consider there may be not solely a defence to those costs however an excellent defence to those costs,” Effman stated. “We consider that it’s going to consequence in an acquittal as soon as this trial commences and concludes in California.”
“However the actuality is Mr Weinstein is serving a 23-year time period at a most safety facility in New York state,” he stated. “We all know he’s not going wherever.”
Erie County Assistant District Lawyer Colleen Curtin Gable took subject with Effman’s suggestion that there isn’t any hurry.
“So far as what’s humanitarian to all individuals concerned, together with the victims in this case, the time is of the essence,” she stated.
District Lawyer John Flynn later known as Effman’s delay over paperwork “a sandbag transfer” that would have been resolved earlier.
Weinstein didn’t communicate through the listening to as he sat at a desk with his palms folded in entrance of him, however seemed to be in good spirits as he chatted with his lawyer earlier than the continuing obtained underway.
Effman stated he needed to delay the extradition in order that Weinstein might bear two scheduled medical procedures, a watch surgical procedure and a dental process, however that California prosecutors denied his requests.
“He’s virtually technically blind at this level and in want of surgical procedure,” in keeping with the lawyer, who added Weinstein additionally had misplaced 4 tooth whereas behind bars.
The Hollywood producer’s attorneys have appealed his 2020 conviction, arguing in court docket papers final week that Manhattan Choose James Burke swayed the trial’s consequence with repeated rulings beneficial to prosecutors and that the 23-year jail sentence Burke imposed was “unduly harsh and extreme.”
A jury discovered Weinstein responsible of raping an aspiring actress in a New York Metropolis lodge room in 2013 and sexually assaulting a manufacturing assistant at his condominium in 2006 by forcibly performing oral intercourse on her.
He was acquitted of first-degree rape and two counts of predatory sexual assault stemming from actor Annabella Sciorra’s allegations of a mid-Nineties rape.
The extradition listening to had been delayed since August due to the pandemic.
Weinstein survived a bout with the coronavirus in March on the jail. His attorneys stated he skilled signs of COVID-19 once more in mid-November however didn’t take a look at constructive for the illness at the moment.