Back on February 24, Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of first-degree sexual assault and third-degree rape by a jury in New York. A few weeks later he was sentenced to 23 years in prison for those charges—and now he’s been held responsible for a large financial payout for survivors.
On June 30, the New York Attorney General’s office announced an almost $19 million lawsuit settlement for those who suffered sexual abuse and harassment at the hands of Weinstein, according to CNN. “Harvey Weinstein and The Weinstein Company failed their female employees. After all the harassment, threats, and discrimination, their victims are finally receiving some justice,” New York attorney general Letitia James said in a statement to CNN.
The $18,875,000 would be used to create a victims’ compensation fund for those who have been abused by Weinstein, though it still needs final approval from a U.S. District Court in New York City, per NBC News. “We fought a long and grueling battle in the courtroom. Harvey avoided accountability for decades, and it was a powerful moment for us to band together and demand justice,” Caitlin Dulany, who is one of the nine plaintiffs in the lawsuit that led to the settlement, said in a statement to NBC. According to the outlet, the terms indicate victims would be allowed to “submit confidential claims describing their experiences and the impact of the misconduct. Payments for damages might range from $7,500 to $750,000.”
However, not everyone is thrilled with this latest ruling in the Weinstein saga. “We are completely astounded that the Attorney General is taking a victory lap for this unfair and inequitable proposal, and on behalf of our clients, we will be vigorously objecting in court,” said Douglas H. Wigdor and Kevin Mintzer, lawyers for six other women who have accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct. They also called the settlement “a complete sellout.”
Weinstein responded through his attorneys. “With closure in sight on one front, Mr. Weinstein remains intently focused in defending himself on all remaining legal matters, including the appeal of his criminal conviction, civil lawsuits, and the charges filed against him in L.A.,” Imran Ansari, one of his lawyers, said in a statement. “He continues to pursue all legal recourse available to him and remains steadfast in the defense of those matters.”
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