Lawyers of Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein (pictured) on Friday filed a 159-page defence motion as a first step to prove that their client did not rape or sexually assault the three accusers and to also get the indictment against him dismissed.
For this, they cited around 40 warm and flirty emails sent to him by one of the accusers after she was allegedly raped by him in a hotel room in 2013.
The emails written by the unnamed woman, referred to in the motion as Complaining Witness 1, revealed a loving relationship between Weinstein and her. The content of the emails clearly showed they were not written by a rape victim to her alleged rapist, the motion said.
In the emails, the accuser refers to Weinstein as ‘dear’, and keeps reminding him that she is always thinking of him.
Addressing him as the ‘big guy’ months after the alleged rape, the woman says she misses him and plans their late night meetings at various locations.
Her words ‘Let’s get together’, ‘always good to hear your voice’, ‘I love you, always do’ point to an intimate relationship between the two, the motion asserts.
Weinstein’s lawyer Ben Brafman said his client had a long and consensual relationship with his accuser. Weinstein has consistently denied any non-consensual actions. The anonymous woman accused Weinstein of rape only when disclosures against him provoked the #MeToo movement late last year.
Brafman said Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr did not reveal the emails to the grand jury as they were “exculpatory” evidence of Weinstein’s long-term and consensual relationship with the accuser.
The disclosure of emails might have led the grand jury to take a different position on the case, Brafman said.
The Manhattan District Attorney also yielded to public and media pressure to prosecute Weinstein as soon as possible, he said.
The motion put forth arguments that could warrant dismissal of the indictment against Weinstein.
The motion says the other two accusers in the case were identified only because they came forward publicly. Former actress Lucia Evans said Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex at his office in 2004, and Mimi Haleyi claimed he forcibly performed oral sex on her in July 2006.
Weinstein’s next court hearing is on September 20. If convicted, he faces a minimum of 10 years in jail.