MeToo activist Asia Argento reportedly paid off her own sexual assault accuser

Brenda Watkins
August 20, 2018

Asia Argento paid off a former child actor who she allegedly assualted when he was 17 years old, according to The New York Times.

She gave him alcohol to drink and showed him a series of notes she had written to him on hotel stationery.

Later that day she posted a close-up of their faces on Instagram with the caption, "Happiest day of my life reunion with @jimmymbennett xox", and added that "jimmy is going to be in my next movie and that is a fact, dig that jack".

Argento became a powerful voice for the #MeToo movement after accusing Weinstein of raping her when she was 21 in his hotel room in 1997 during the Cannes Film Festival.

Argento and Bennett subsequently settled out of court, with Argento agreeing to pay $380,000 over the course of a year and a half, starting with an initial payment of $200,000 that was made in April. As the teenager returned to his parents' house, he began to feel "extremely confused, mortified and disgusted", according to the notice of intent. In California, the age of consent is 18.

Neither Argento nor any of her representatives responded to requests for comment on the Times' story, it was reported.

While the Times has not received a response from Argento and Bennett declined to comment on the matter, the paper said three people familiar with the case corroborated the documents' authenticity.

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The New York Times reports that Argento's lawyer Carrie Goldberg handled the settlement.

Bennett says in the notice that he had sex with Argento in a California hotel in 2013.

Since the New Yorker exposé, Weinstein has been charged in NY with six felony counts of sex assault, including rape.

His notice of intent to sue sought US$3.5 million in damages for "intentional infliction of emotional distress, lost wages, assault and battery", the paper said.

Both appeared in the 2004 film The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things, where they played mother and son.

A letter to Argento from Goldberg said that the money was to help Bennett.

In the documents, Bennett claims that on May 9, 2013, Argento served him an alcoholic drink at a room in the Marina Del Rey Ritz-Carlton and subsequently performed oral sex on him.

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