A federal judge has rejected a proposed $ 18.9 million settlement between Harvey Weinstein and nine women who say he sexually assaulted or abused them, saying the tentative settlement is not fair to other women.
U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein in New York said Tuesday that he would not consent to the settlement because the settlement seeks to create a group case that covers claims by women who asked to be excluded from a settlement. He said the proposal unfairly links women who simply knew Weinstein with those who were sexually assaulted by him.
“Not all women were captured in the same way,” said Hellerstein. “Your agreement would create inequality among all those people.”
Lawyers for the women who chose to exit the deal praised the decision.
“We have been saying for more than a year and a half that the terms and conditions of the agreement were unfair and should never be imposed on survivors of sexual assault,” said Douglas Wigdor, who represents six women who say they have been abused by Weinstein. “On behalf of our clients, we hope to pursue justice against Harvey Weinstein and his many facilitators.”
The women who accepted the proposed deal, female actresses and screenwriters, sued the movie tycoon in December 2017, alleging that his namesake company, its officers and directors, and Miramax, the studio he once directed, allowed his predatory behavior. The only remaining defendant in the case is Weinstein, after others obtained layoffs.
Weinstein is currently serving a 23-year sentence in a maximum-security prison in New York State after his conviction at a trial this year. “
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