Harvey Weinstein has been hit with his first civil claim in England and Wales, by a UK-based actress accusing the disgraced Hollywood mogul of sexual assault.
Weinstein has been at the centre of a criminal investigation since an late October, after an extensive outpouring of allegations including rape and sexual assault from women in both America and the UK. He “unequivocally denies” any non-consensual sex.
Now, London lawyer Jill Greenfield is representing a woman (who wishes to remain anonymous) in the high court. The claim has been made against Weinstein himself, the Weinstein Company UK Ltd and the Weinstein Company LLC in the US, and is listed as damages for personal injury, expenses, consequential loss including aggravated and exemplary damages, and interest arising out of a series of sexual assaults. The claim is expected to top £300,000 in damages. The woman in question is said to be traumatised by the events, which took place after the year 2000, and has reportedly not told her family.
Civil cases differ from criminal cases in that they only have to be proven based on ‘the balance of probabilities’ rather than ‘beyond reasonable doubt’.
A spokesperson for Weinstein told The Guardian: “Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr Weinstein. Mr Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances.
“Mr Weinstein obviously can’t speak to anonymous allegations, but with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, Mr Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual.”