A New York court on Monday found fallen Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein guilty of committing a criminal sex act in the first degree, and rape in the third degree. A New York Supreme Court jury of seven men and five women arrived at the verdict after deliberating in the case for more than 26 hours over five days, reports cnn.com. After the verdict, a handcuffed Weinstein was taken into custody.
On the first charge, the jury found Weinstein guilty of a criminal sex act in the first degree for forcing oral sex on former Project Runway production assistant Miriam Haley in 2006. The guilty filmmaker could get a minimum of five years and a maximum of 25 years in prison on this count, according to theguarardian.com. On the second charge, Weinstein was convicted of raping a woman in a New York hotel in 2013. He could get a maximum of four years on this count. The Guardian website added that the 67-year-old former film producer was acquitted of three further charges, including the two most serious counts of predatory sexual assault, which carried a possible life sentence and another count of rape in the first degree.
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During the trial, Weinstein's defense had tried raising the motion for a mistrial but had been denied by the jury. The court has reserved the sentencing for a future date. According to cnn.com, Weinstein still has to take to the stands for the hearing of charges against him of sexual assault and rape in separate incidents in Los Angeles.
In October 2017, according to reporst in The New York Times and The New Yorker, several women came out to accuse Weinstein of rape and sexual assault over at least three decades. The incident had a global chain reaction, triggering off the MeToo movement. Harvey Weinstein was once acclaimed for his contribution to the development of independent cinema in Hollywood, and for also backing relevant content-driven entertainers with Oscar-winning films such as Shakespeare In Love and Pulp Fiction. His film production companies were Miramax Films and The Weinstein Company.