Harvey Weinstein Reaches $25M Settlement in Criminal Case, Undergoes Back Surgery

Brenda Watkins
December 13, 2019

A tentative $25 million settlement revealed Wednesday to end almost every sexual misconduct lawsuit brought against Harvey Weinstein and his former film studio's board was praised by a plaintiff and some lawyers but criticized by others who say those who opt out are punished. Former model and Weinstein accuser Zoe Brock expressed via the Times that agreeing to the settlement made her feel "defeated and hopeless", due to the fact that neither Weinstein nor his former board members would be required to pay the victims.

Under the deal, the film producer would not acknowledge any wrongdoing and funds would be paid by insurance companies backing The Weinstein Company, the report said. Now, Weinstein and the board of his bankrupt film studio, the Weinstein Company, have reached a tentative $25 million settlement agreement with more than half of his alleged survivors.

This payout would also be part of a larger settlement of $47 million, the majority of which would be used to close out the Weinstein Company's obligations before it completely goes under, according to the Times.

Thomas Giuffra, a partner with Rheingold Giuffra, Ruffo & Plotkin LLP in NY, who represents one of the plaintiffs in the case, said he is opposed to the settlement and plans to pursue litigation in the matter.

"It's mixed feelings", Dulany said.

"What's most offensive is that they're trying to force our client to settle", Wigdor said.

. It is not known how many will agree to participate. At least four accusers are staying away from the deal and some are planning to oppose it in front of the bankruptcy court.

A group lawsuit had been brought by dozens of women who accuse Mr Weinstein of sexual harassment and abuse, though high-profile figures who have also made allegations, such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie, are not part of the action.

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"None of us has any interest in strong-arming any survivor into the settlement", said Elizabeth Fegan, a lawyer representing nine Weinstein accusers and a proposed class of accusers, said in an email.

The former film industry exec faces a January 6 trial on rape and sexual assault charges in state court, where he has pleaded not guilty.

Fegan said the settlement helps ensure women will be compensated, particularly since Weinstein is in bankruptcy proceedings and some court rulings have resulted in the dismissal of many claims. The latter has said he flagged company executives about Weinstein's alleged behaviour.

Ms Rebecca Goldman, chief operating officer of the Time's Up Foundation, released a statement that called the tentative settlement "flawed".

"No justice, no peace", she wrote.

There are other alleged victims, including Ashley Judd, who are pursuing separate court cases against Weinstein.

His bail was increased from $US1 million ($1.45 million) to $US5 million ($7.23 million) on Wednesday for allegedly mishandling his electronic ankle monitor.

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