The rape charges involve a woman who has not come forward publicly.
The Manhattan district attorney's office and NY police have investigated Harvey Weinstein for months, coming under growing pressure from the Time's Up movement to bring the disgraced producer to justice. More than 90 women have since come forward with additional allegations.
The New York Daily News reports that the charges Weinstein was hit with Friday are in connection with the allegations from Lucia Evans, who told investigators that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on him in 2004.
Still, it was not a simple story.
Geiss, despite expressing fears that Weinstein might be able to escape justice, was also full of hope for a future in which women would be believed.
Two other Weinstein productions, "Paddington 2" and a movie version of the series "The Six Million Dollar Man" - titled "The Six Billion Dollar Man" and starring Mark Wahlberg - were acquired by Warner Bros. Weinstein's lawyer Benjamin Brafman entered a plea of not guilty, saying later that "Harvey Weinstein did not invent the casting couch". "Nothing about today's proceeding changes Mr. Weinstein's position". Even as the roster of names mounted with accusations against Cosby, the prospect of serious ramifications appeared doubtful after a first mistrial in that case.
Numerous other media and entertainment figures accused of harassment or sexual misdeeds have avoided prosecution.
Convicting Weinstein this time may be a tall order.
"It always is a tough spot when it's one witness against another, my word against your word, '" said Lynne Abraham, former district attorney of Philadelphia.
What Harvey Weinstein Brought to Court as He's Charged With Sexual Assault
Attorneys for Weinstein have already made that argument.
Brafman said he had been speaking to Weinstein about 20 times each day and said he was, at times, "lonely and angry".
"My job is not to defend behaviour", he said. "These cases must be prosecuted".
"We know that he has high-powered lawyers, that he's not above employing very dubious methods to extract information", she said. "This is particularly important where a person of prominence is involved".
Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi said, "The defendant is charged with two violent felonies. for two separate forcible sexual assaults against two women", and noted that the charges were the result of "months of investigation".
Since October 2017, more than 90 women have accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct. Other suspects who recognized him yelled out, "Yo, Harvey!" In the absence of criminal charges, Hollywood has taken on a quasi-judicial role. She is not one of the victims in the case on Friday; hers was still pending, officials said. "He was a cult leader of Hollywood, their king". The most serious rape charge carries a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison.
So the fact that he was carrying at least two highly visible books as he arrived at the police station - one about Broadway's heyday, the other about a controversial film director - appeared to be created to send a message, but what message exactly?
Then came the "perp walk" - Weinstein was marched past the assembled press with hands in cuffs behind his back, shuttled without ceremony straight to the nearby Manhattan Criminal Court.
The former mogul - once the toast of Hollywood and whose films won scores of Oscars - was escorted out of a Manhattan police station in handcuffs and was expected to appear in court later Friday.
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