Could it be? Harvey Weinstein might finally face legal repercussions for his alleged criminal hobby of sexually assaulting women.
In addition to ongoing investigations by the NYPD, LAPD, and the London police, Weinstein now faces an investigation by federal prosecutors.
From the Wall Street Journal:
As part of the investigation, some of the people familiar said, the U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York is examining whether Mr. Weinstein lured or induced any women to travel across state lines for the purpose of committing a sex crime, which is an offense that could be charged federally.
The report continued:
Manhattan federal prosecutors had already been investigating possible fraud connected to financial transactions arranged by Mr. Weinstein for a charity auction, but the broadening of the probe to include possible sex crimes occurred in recent months, some of the people familiar with the matter said.
However, the New York Police Department is prepared to arrest Weinstein now, if only Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. would give them approval. In fact, the NYPD has been ready to bust his creepy ass since 2015. Former NYPD Special Victims Division supervisor Michael Bock, who investigated Weinstein for allegedly sexually assaulting Italian model Ambra Battilana in 2015, told New York magazine in March:
“We gave them beyond a reasonable doubt. We obviously know who this man is. We obviously know we have a different burden of proof. So to go above and beyond as we did, he should’ve been arrested. He should’ve been arrested.”
“They prosecute people for misdemeanors with far less probable cause than this,” he added. Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Bock reiterated this week that “We believe he should be arrested.”
Vance’s office defended the decision to not press charges with spokesperson Danny Frost telling New York, “Police evaluate arrests based on probable cause, whereas prosecutors must make sure they can prove to a jury that every element of a criminal statute was violated beyond a reasonable doubt—a much higher standard.”
In the wake of the report, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo asked the the state attorney general to review Vance’s investigation and subsequent determination.
Benjamin Brafman, Weinstein’s lawyer, told the WSJ that he met with federal prosecutors “in an attempt to dissuade them from proceeding.”
“Mr. Weinstein has always maintained that he has never engaged in nonconsensual sexual acts,” he said.