Judge Rejects Harvey Weinstein’s Motion to Dismiss Sexual Assault Case

A New York judge rejected a request from Harvey Weinstein’s lawyers to throw out charges that he sexually assaulted two women, Variety reports.

Weinstein’s lawyers have accused one of the alleged victims of lying, while they have also accused the Manhattan District Attorney’s office of not turning over evidence that would supposedly show a consensual relationship between Weinstein and his accusers. After a private meeting with the prosecution and defense Thursday, Judge James Burke rejected the request and set a pre-trial date for March 7th.

Weinstein is facing five counts of rape and sexual assault. The attempt to throw out the charges followed an October decision, in which a judge dismissed one criminal charge against Weinstein. The dropped charge relates to an allegation brought by Lucia Evans, who accused Weinstein of forcing her to perform oral sex on him in 2004.

During Thursday’s hearing, several prominent supporters of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements appeared in court to show their support for Weinstein’s accusers. Among those in attendance were Marisa Tomei, Goria Allred, Jennifer Esposito, Amber Tamblyn, Nia Vardalos and Lisa Borders, the new president of Time’s Up. The women wore #TimesUp t-shirts, which they were ordered to cover up in court.

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