Harvey Weinstein’s 23-Year Prison Sentence Upheld

A New York appeals court on Thursday affirmed conviction of Harvey Weinstein of rape and sexual assault, rejecting an attempt to overturn his decision based on arguments that the trial went against him. .

In a unanimous decision, a panel of five justices from the New York Supreme Court upheld the trial judge’s rulings that Weinstein deemed improper and unfair.

“We reject the defendant’s arguments, and affirm the conviction in all respects,” the 45-page order read.

Weinstein was convicted in February 2020 on two of the five counts of committing a criminal sex act in the first degree and rape in the third degree. He was sentenced to 23 years in a prison in New York state.

On appeal, Weinstein’s lawyers argued that Supreme Court Justice James Burke, who oversaw the trial, made a number of procedural errors and made other rulings in favor of a prosecution. unfair way. They pointed out that Burke refused to defend a supposedly biased juror and allowed evidence of an unaccompanied crime.

One of Weinstein’s other central arguments in his appeal was that he was stripped of his constitutional right to defend himself because prosecutors were allowed to cross-examine him on 28 cases spanning nearly 30 years for the purpose of reduce his reputation. The cases involved allegedly engaging in a range of business-related misconduct, from encouraging executives to lie on their behalf to threats and acts of violence. force on the people who work for you, among other things.

However, the appellate court concluded that the judge had authority to make those decisions.

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“While we acknowledge the sheer size of the impeachment document the court allowed, we analyzed that decision in the broader context of all the circumstances presented in this case, and concluded that the court followed its decision,” the order read.

The judges found that all of the material authorized by Burke was “certainly relevant.” They sided with prosecutors that Weinstein’s allegations of soliciting lies speak to his reputation and that claims of abusive behavior in a business setting “reflect a willingness to put self-interest first.” on the interests of others”.

“We’re disappointed, but not surprised,” said Juda Engelmayer, a spokeswoman for Weinstein.

Engelmayer added, “We are considering all of our options and will seek to petition the appeals court and beyond.”

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