Harvey Weinstein Scores Win Against LA DA In Multiple Rape Charges Case; Sexual Battery Claim Officially Dismissed

Facing 140 years behind bars if found guilty on multiple sex crimes, Harvey Weinstein today saw one of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s sexual battery charges against him tossed out by a state judge.

Affirming a ruling she had made back on July 29, LA Superior Court Judge Lisa B. Lench this morning rejected an attempt by the D.A.’s office to reargue the matter.

In accordance with the motion put forward by the disgraced producer’s lawyers last month, Judge Lench agreed that prosecutors had not effectively informed a Grand Jury that the March 11, 2010 attack in a Beverly Hills hotel was now outside the 10-year span of the statute of limitations on such crimes.

In fact, the D.A.’s office had initially pinned the matter on Weinstein in the spring of 2020, which was within the statute. However, because an April 2021 indictment of Weinstein superseded the previous charges, this particular claim now falls outside of the required decade span.

The win for the not guilty pleading Weinstein comes less than a month after the once feared mogul was finally extradited from New York state to face charges and a trial here in the City of Angels. Even with this specific sexual battery charge now dropped from the case, Weinstein is up against 10 other rape and other sex crimes claims.

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No trial date has been set in the matter yet, but could be at a September hearing. The D.A.’s office declined to comment on today’s ruling.

Weinstein’s camp distinctly did not decline to comment.

“We are pleased that the judge agreed that one of the charges alleged was barred by the statue of limitations,” a rep for Weinstein told Deadline after today’s hearing. “It remains dismissed and it never should have been brought in the first place. We consider this a partial victory, but know there is quite the road ahead. Harvey remains optimistic and hopeful.”

Ranging from 2004 to 2013, the now unsealed charges could see L.A. District Attorney George Gascón’s office do what the Manhattan D.A did in its successful prosecution of Weinstein and bring in other victims of the producers as what is known as “prior bad acts” witnesses. Defense attorneys Mark Werksman and Alan Jackson, who argued in the DTLA courtroom today, have made it clear they plan to challenge any such attempt by prosecutors.

Before today, Weinstein faced four counts of rape, four counts of forcible oral copulation, one count of sexual penetration by use of force, plus two counts of sexual battery by restraint and sexual battery in incidents involving five women from in L.A. County over a nine-year period. Now it is one count less, though there is a slim but unlikely chance prosecutors could go back to the Grand Jury on the dismissed sexual battery count

Since being flown out to LA on July 20 from his residence at the Wende Correctional Facility near Buffalo, NY, convicted sex offender Weinstein has been held without bail in the Twin Towers jail downtown. The time he is spending under lock and key there is going toward the 23-year sentence he received in March 2020 after being found guilty of two sex crime felony charges by a New York jury.

In April, the ailing 69-year old Weinstein filed his long-anticipated appeal in the New York case. The office of retiring DA Cyrus Vance Jr has yet to file a response to that appeal.

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