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French actor Gerard Depardieu has been accused of rape and sexual assault, according to a report Thursday from the BBC. He denies the claims.
According to the Holland-based news agency BNO News, citing French officials, an investigation was launched after a woman told police that she was raped by Depardieu on two separate occasions.
Sources speaking to Le Parisien newspaper claimed that a woman went to the police in Lambesc, southern France, on Monday to file the criminal complaint, saying she been sexually assaulted at Depardieu’s home in Paris on Aug. 7 and Aug. 13. The case was then passed to prosecutors in Paris.
BNO also reported that the woman, described as an actress and dancer in her 20s, was known to Depardieu, who was giving her professional advice.
He denies the allegations “absolutely,” his lawyer Herve Temime told the AFP news agency.
“I had a long meeting with Gerard Depardieu and and I am absolutely convinced his innocence will be established,” he told France Info radio.
Depardieu, one of France’s most iconic and prolific names in cinema, with approximate 170 titles to his name, was nominated for an Oscar for his role in the 1990 film Cyrano de Bergerac, which also earned him Cannes and Cesar honors.
Other acclaimed performances since Depardieu broke out in 1974 in Bertrand Blier’s comedy Les Valseuses (Going Places) include Bernardo Bertolucci’s historical epic 1900, alongside Robert De Niro; Francois Truffaut’s The Last Metro; and Peter Weir’s romantic comedy Green Card, which saw him nominated for a Golden Globe.
In 2014, Depardieu famously starred in Abel Ferrara’s Welcome to New York, playing a character closely based on French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn and telling the story of a powerful politician who is arrested after being accused of raping a maid at his hotel.
The actor’s most recent appearances include To the Ends of the World, which competed in the Directors’ Fortnight section at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, and the animated feature Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero.
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