Expected to soon launch his long-anticipated appeal over being sentenced earlier this year to 23 years behind bars for a plethora of sex crimes, Harvey Weinstein now will also be facing confrontation over a proposed multi-million-dollar settlement for more women the producer sexually assaulted.
“The class settlement, filed in the name of class representatives who deserve better, will
provide little relief for most of Harvey Weinstein’s victims,” says an opposition filed today in federal court to the proposed $19 million dollar deal, made public on June 30 “Although the deal speaks about individual awards up to $750,000 and the New York State Attorney General has bragged about a ‘win’ for victims, that is all a cruel hoax,” the objection from attorneys for Wedil David, Dominique Huett, Kaja Sokola, Rowena Chiu, Zelda Perkins, and Tarale Wulff states (READ IT HERE).
“The truth is that the average award to class members under this proposal is likely to be in the range of $10,000 to $20,000,” the 41-page document claims of the civil case pending resolution. “The main winners of this deal, if approved, are Harvey Weinstein, Robert Weinstein, and the ultra-wealthy former directors of The Weinstein Company (“TWC”), who will be absolved from liability, contribute nothing to the settlement and collectively take in about $15 million from the proposed settlement agreement.”
“For the foregoing reasons, the Objectors respectfully requests that the Court deny preliminary approval of the proposed class settlement,” the expected filing from lawyers Douglas Wigdor, Bryan Arbeit and Kevin Mintzer.
Representatives for the currently imprisoned Harvey Weinstein were quick to respond to the objection filed in U.S. District Court in New York. “The practical reality is that those who opt out of the settlement face an uncertain financial recovery, with The Weinstein Company bankrupt, and Mr. Weinstein defending legal matters, facing debt and judgments, frozen assets, marital and child support obligations, and a line of creditors looking for compensation,” said Weinstein’s attorney Imran H. Ansari on Monday. “Mr. Weinstein’s current and future financial state is far from healthy, not only has his personal liberty been taken from him, but his financial liberty as well,” the Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins, P.C lawyer added.
In contrast, the office of New York State Attorney General Letitia James did not respond to request for comment on today’s filing. A preliminary hearing on the proposed settlement in scheduled for tomorrow in front Judge Alvin Hellerstein via telephone.
After a trial that lasted almost two months, on February 24, the one-time mogul was found guilty by a New York jury of two sex crime felony charges Allegedly suffering from a litany of health issues that saw him in an out of Bellevue Hospital, Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years behind bars on March 11.
Facing a COVID-19 pandemic delayed extradition to LA on a series of rape and sex-crime charges, such as an April 10th added sexual battery by restraint charge, the one-time coronavirus infected Weinstein is presently out of isolation and serving his time at the maximum security Wende Correctional Facility near Buffalo. Since his bout with the illness, the 68-year old Pulp Fiction EP has also been accused of raping a 17-year old in 1994 in a May 29 jury trial seeking suit
Accused by Ashley Judd in a now temporarily halted case, failing to get a sex-trafficking class action tossed out, and the subject of a more recent lawsuit from a woman who says he abused her when she was 16 in 2002, Weinstein is also facing allegations from close to 100 other women who say he sexually assaulted or sexually harassed them.
First filed in November 2017, the class action lawsuit in the spotlight again today alleges that Harvey Weinstein was a serial sexual harasser and abuser, and the various companies with which he was affiliated, as well as certain respective current and former officers and directors, did nothing to stop or prevent his actions in violation of federal and state law – even though they knew it was happening.
Over the past year, several women in that expanding class action have raised concerns, to put it very politely, over the what was initially a $25 million over-arching settlement that was a component of an overall $45 million deal.
Using terms like “insulting” to describe the proposed settlement on March 9, several Weinstein accusers have publicly called on Empire State Attorney General James to reject that proposed multimillion-dollar settlement with Weinstein and his former company – a call she clearly rejected in supporting the deal that would see millions more for lawyers and former members of the Weinstein Company board.