Atilgan Ozdil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — A new attorney for Harvey Weinstein says the movie mogul was “railroaded” by the #MeToo movement.
Weinstein appeared in a New York court Thursday morning to petition a judge to approve his newly retained lawyers, Donna Rotunno and Damon Cheronis.
The award-winning film producer faces five sexual misconduct charges involving the accusations of two women, but Rotunno insisted the relationships Weinstein had with his accusers were consensual.
Rotunno said the facts revealed to date do not represent the whole story.
“Emotion of this case has taken over,” Rotunno told reporters outside the courthouse. “There is a truth you have not reported on.”
Claiming that Weinstein has been “railroaded” by #MeToo, Rotunno said that “movements allow emotion to take over.”
Rotunno also said that, as a woman, she would be able to more effectively cross-examine a female witness.
She added that she and Cheronis are “honored to represent Mr Weinstein.”
Weinstein is on his third set of criminal defense attorneys. Earlier this year he let go celebrity attorney Benjamin Brafman and turned to Jose Baez, known for representing high-profile clients, including Casey Anthony.
Baez, however, said that he and Weinstein developed “fundamental disagreements” about his representation, and at Thursday’s court appearance, Baez asked the judge for permission to leave the case.
Weinstein’s new team of Rotunno and Cheronis are well-known criminal defense lawyers in Chicago, but have never tried a case in New York.
Weinstein has been free on $1 million bail pending trial. Separate attorneys have been working on a settlement in bankruptcy court with dozens of women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.
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