Mimi Haleyi to testify at Harvey Weinstein's trial
Harvey Weinstein hobbles into court for week two of his rape trial where former production assistant Mimi Haleyi is set to take the stand and detail how the movie mogul ‘sexually assaulted her in his New York City apartment in 2006’
- Former Weinstein Co. production assistant Mimi Haleyi is expected to take the stand at Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial in New York City on Monday
- Haleyi is the second of six alleged sexual assault survivors slated to testify at the Miramax co-founder’s trial
- She claims Weinstein, 67, forcibly performed oral sex on her in his New York City apartment in 2006
- Haleyi claims Weinstein invited her to his home for what she thought was a meeting about her career but sexually assaulted her while she was on her period
- They met in 2004 and he helped land her a production assistant job on the show Project Runway
- Weinstein is accused of five felony counts including rape and predatory sexual assault
- Those charges stem from Haleyi’s allegations and that of another woman who claims she was raped by Weinstein in a New York City hotel in 2013
Former Weinstein Co. production assistant Mimi Haleyi is expected to take the stand at Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial where she’ll recount how the Hollywood mogul allegedly forcibly performed oral sex on her in his New York City apartment in 2006.
The Miramax co-founder’s high-profile trial will start its second week at the Manhattan courthouse with more women detailing how the 67-year-old movie giant sexually assaulted them. In total six women are expected to testify against him at the trial.
Weinstein, who is accused of five felony counts including rape and predatory sexual assault, has denied any wrongdoing. He has made a frail appearance in court and on Monday hobbled into the courthouse clutching onto a walker, just as he has in the previous days of the trial. He faces life behind bars if convicted on all counts.
The charges Weinstein faces stem from Haley’s allegations and that of another woman, Jessica Mann, who claimed Weinstein raped her in a New York City hotel in 2013.
Former Weinstein Co. production assistant Mimi Haleyi (center in beige jacket) is expected to take the stand at Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial on Monday where she’ll recount how the Hollywood mogul allegedly sexually assaulted her in his New York City apartment in 2006. Pictured arriving to court Monday morning
Weinstein pictured arriving to the Manhattan criminal court house Monday morning feebly using a walker
Weinstein, who is accused of five felony counts including rape and predatory sexual assault, has denied any wrongdoing. He has made a frail appearance in court throughout his trial, often arriving clutching onto a walker
Haleyi, who worked for Project Runway – a reality show which Weinstein produced, pictured arriving to court on Monday
Lawyer for Weinstein’s accusers including Haleyi pictured arriving to court Monday morning
Haleyi claims that Weinstein, who she first met at the 2004 premiere of the movie Aviator, invited her to his New York apartment in 2006 for what she thought was a business meeting. Weinstein they forcibly performed oral sex on her, she claims.
Haleyi went public with her allegations in an October 2017 press conference alongside her lawyer Gloria Allred, who also represents other Weinstein accusers including Soprano’s actress Annabella Sciorra who testified just last week.
Haleyi, whose legal name is Miriam Haleyi and was born in England and raised in Sweden, first met Weinstein’s when she was in her 20s at the 2004 London premiere of the Leonardo DiCaprio film. When they crossed paths again at the Cannes Film Festival in 2006, she asked to work on one of his productions and he invited her to his hotel room and asked for a massage.
She said she refused, replying, ‘No sorry, I’m not a masseuse.’
After a couple meetings Weinstein landed Haleyi a job helping on the set of Project Runway, a reality fashion competition show he produced. Later, she said, he invited her to attend a fashion show in Paris, but she declined by bringing up his sketchy reputation.
In 2006 Weinstein invited her to his SoHo apartment, sending a pick up car for Haleyi for what she thought was a friendly meeting about her career.
‘It was not long, though, before he was all over me making sexual advances. I told him, “No, no, no,” but he insisted,’ she has previously said. ‘He was extremely persistent and physically overpowering. He then orally forced himself on me.’
When she arrived she said Weinstein forced her onto a bed and forced his mouth onto her genitals. She said she tried to get him to stop, even telling him she was menstruating, but he wouldn’t relent.
‘I was mortified. I was in disbelief and disgusted,’ she said.
In opening statements last week, prosecutor Meghan Hast said there was a subsequent hotel room encounter that Haleyi didn’t reveal in 2017. Hast said that though Haleyi didn’t want to have intercourse with Weinstein, she kept still and ‘let him degrade her.’
Last week’s trial ended with Rosie Perez (left and right) testifying about her emotional phone calls where her friend actress Annabella Sciorra claimed Weinstein raped her in 1993 in her New York apartment and ruined a family heirloom nightgown of hers in the act. The alleged rape is not one of the incidents Weinstein is charged over but prosecutors were allowed to bring Sciorra into the courtroom to talk about it to support their case, specifically the charge of predatory sexual assault. Perez is known for her role in Do The Right Thing (right)
Annabella Sciorra cried as she took the stand in Harvey Weinstein’s New York trial on Thursday to tell how he raped her in 1993, a year before confiding fully in Perez about it. She appeared in The Sopranos as Tony Soprano’s mistress (right)
Harvey Weinstein held the railing as he left court at the end of the day on Friday for his trial on charges of rape and sexual assault
A court sketch shows Harvey Weinstein listening to testimony from Rosie Perez as his sex crimes trial on Friday
In testifying, Haleyi will have to deal with a defense team that said it plans to confront Weinstein´s accusers with their own words – messages they exchanged with Weinstein well after the alleged assaults.
Weinstein’s lawyers are focusing on the positive-sounding emails and texts calls the victims exchanged with Weinstein to call into question the accusers’ accounts.
The movie giant’s defense team is trying to paint the accusers as opportunistic women who willingly had transnational sex with Weinstein in order to advance their own careers and some of the accusers continued intimate relationships with him after the alleged attacks, his attorneys claim.
Some of Haleyi’s messages were made public last year when Weinstein´s lawyers sought to get his case dismissed. One sent to Weinstein’s phone in 2007 reads: ‘Hi! Just wondering if u have any news on whether Harvey will have time to see me before he leaves? X Miriam.’
Last week actress Annabella Sciorra testified that Mr. Weinstein had raped her in her Manhattan apartment in the early 1990s. She said on a second occasion he showed up uninvited outsider her hotel room wearing just his underwear and carrying baby oil in one hand and a videotape in another.
Last week’s trial ended with Rosie Perez testifying about her emotional phone calls where Sciorra said Weinstein raped her in 1993 in her New York apartment and ruined a family heirloom nightgown of hers in the act.
The alleged rape is not one of the incidents Weinstein is charged over but prosecutors were allowed to bring Sciorra into the courtroom to talk about it to support their case, specifically the charge of predatory sexual assault.
Who are Weinstein’s accusers who will testify?
Six women are expected to testify at Weinstein’s rape trial, while more than 90 women have accused the Miramax founder of sexual misconduct, harassment, rape, and unwanted touching.
One is actress Annabella Sciorra who claims Weinstein raped her in her New York City apartment in 1993.
A second is Haleyi, who claims Weinstein forcibly performed oral sex on her inside his apartment in 2006.
A third accuser, Jessica Mann, claims the movie mogul of raping her in a Midtown Manhattan motel in 2013.
Costume designer Dawn Dunning claims Weinstein sexually harassed her and tried to pressure her into having a three-way with him and his assistant when she was 24 at a Manhattan hotel in 2004.
Aspiring actress Tarale Wulff claims Weinstein masturbated in front of her as she was working as a cocktail waitress at Cipriani Upstairs in Manhattan and he later assaulted her in his bedroom.
A sixth woman, Lauren Young, claims he groped her in a hotel, masturbated and ejaculated onto a bathroom floor in February 2012 at a dinner event during Oscar season when she was 22.
The Harvey Weinstein story: From studio to courtroom
1979 – Harvey Weinstein and his brother Bob found independent film distribution and production company Miramax, naming it after their parents, Miriam and Max.
June 1993 – The Walt Disney Company buys Miramax for $80 million, but the brothers stay on until 2005.
May 1994 – Director Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Pulp Fiction,’ starring Uma Thurman and John Travolta and backed by Miramax, wins the prestigious Palme d’Or award at the Cannes Film Festival.
1997 – Miramax wins its first Academy Award for best picture with ‘The English Patient.’
1999 – Miramax’s ‘Shakespeare in Love’ wins seven Oscars – including best picture and best actress for Gwyneth Paltrow.
2004 – Weinstein divorces his first wife Eve Chilton, with whom he has three daughters.
2005 – The Weinstein brothers leave Miramax to set up their own production company, The Weinstein Company.
2007 – Weinstein marries English fashion director Georgina Chapman.
October 5, 2017 – The New York Times reports Weinstein settled with eight women who accused him of unwanted physical contact and sexual harassment over three decades. Weinstein in a statement apologized for causing pain to colleagues and said he was taking a leave of absence and entering therapy. Reuters did not independently verify the details of the New York Times report.
October 6, 2017 – Weinstein takes indefinite leave of absence from The Weinstein Co. The company later says he is fired.
October 10, 2017 – The New Yorker reports allegations by 13 women who said Weinstein sexually harassed or assaulted them, including three who said he raped them. Weinstein again denies non-consensual sex. Reuters did not independently verify the details of The New Yorker’s accounts. Chapman, Weinstein’s wife, says she is leaving him.
October 14, 2017 – The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the group that selects the Oscar winners, expels Weinstein.
October 2017 – Actress Alyssa Milano fuels the expansion of the #MeToo movement, founded by Tarana Burke, by writing on Twitter: ‘If you’ve ever been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet.’ In the following weeks, #MeToo would be used by millions of women.
January 1, 2018 – Hollywood celebrities launch the Time’s Up campaign to fight sexual harassment in the workplace.
May 25, 2018 – Weinstein surrenders to New York police on charges of rape and a criminal sex act involving alleged assaults against two women, in 2004 and 2013.
June 5, 2018 – Weinstein pleads not guilty to the charges.
June 9, 2018 – Weinstein pleads not guilty to new charges of sexually assaulting a third woman in 2006.
October 11, 2018 – Weinstein wins dismissal of the charges over the alleged 2004 assault. Charges involving the other two women remain pending.
January 17, 2019 – Benjamin Brafman, Weinstein’s defense attorney, issues statement saying he is quitting, without elaborating.
January 25, 2019 – Weinstein appears in court to announce new defense team.
April 26, 2019 – Weinstein’s trial is delayed until Sept. 9 to allow defense more time to gather evidence.
July 11, 2019 – Weinstein hires third legal team after second team of defense attorneys exits the case.
August 26, 2019 – Weinstein pleads not guilty to new indictment involving the same two women accusing him of two counts of predatory sexual assault, in 2006 and 2013. His trial is pushed back to Jan. 6, 2020.
December 11, 2019 – Weinstein and his bankrupt studio reach tentative $25 million settlement with dozens of women who accused him of sexual misconduct. Representatives for Weinstein declined to comment.
January 6, 2020 – Los Angeles prosecutors announce sexual assault charges against Weinstein just hours after he appears in a New York court for the start of his trial on rape charge; Weinstein’s rape trial begins in New York.
Reporting by Reuters
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