12:11pm PT by Ashley Cullins
Judge Dismisses RICO Suit Against Harvey Weinstein
The same day a video surfaced showing Harvey Weinstein interacting with one of his rape accusers, the mogul won in court against a different group of women.
Six women in December sued Weinstein, alleging they, and hundreds of others like them, were subjected to unwanted sexual conduct and lived in fear of being blacklisted. Their claims included battery, assault, both intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress and a RICO claim — arguing that "the Weinstein Sexual Enterprise" is essentially organized crime.
A New York federal judge dismissed the suit following a Tuesday hearing. U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein filed a brief order stating he was granting the motions to dismiss for "the reasons stated at oral argument."
According to Courthouse News Service, Hellerstein is unconvinced the plaintiffs have shown a pattern of sex trafficking necessary to pursue their conspiracy claims. The judge also apparently took a shot at Weinstein's appearance, stating that the producer is no Paul Newman and acknowledged that his negative reputation was widely known.
"In the current environment, it is reassuring to know that the rule of law prevails,” said Weinstein's attorney Phyllis Kupferstein in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.
The women have until Oct. 31 to amend their complaint. Their attorney Elizabeth Fegan also sent THR a statement Thursday. "We heard the Court’s request that we provide additional details regarding the career damage suffered by victims and other technical areas," she said. "We look forward to amending the Complaint and are confident the victims’ claims will continue to move forward."
Melissa Thompson, the woman in the video, is also suing Weinstein as part of a class action complaint filed by the same law firm.