Harvey Weinstein’s Lawyer Blasts Asia Argento’s ‘Stunning Level of Hypocrisy’
Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer offered a strong rebuke of Asia Argento on Monday following reports that claimed the actress and director—a prominent accuser of Weinstein and champion of the #MeToo movement—paid off an accuser of her own.
The New York Times on Sunday reported that Argento, months after publicly accusing Weinstein of sexually assaulting her, arranged to pay $380,000 to actor and musician Jimmy Bennett, who claimed she sexually assaulted him in 2013 when he was 17 and Argento was 37.
Following the report, which was supported by documents and photographs, Weinstein’s attorney Ben Brafman issued a statement contending that Argento’s alleged behavior invalidated her accusations against his client.
“This development reveals a stunning level of hypocrisy by Asia Argento, one of the most vocal catalysts who sought to destroy Harvey Weinstein,” Brafman said. “What is perhaps most egregious, is the timing, which suggests that at the very same time Argento was working on her own secret settlement for the alleged sexual abuse of a minor, she was positioning herself at the forefront of those condemning Mr. Weinstein, despite the fact that her sexual relationship with Mr. Weinstein was between two consenting adults which lasted for more than four years.
“The sheer duplicity of her conduct is quite extraordinary and should demonstrate to everyone how poorly the allegations against Mr. Weinstein were actually vetted and accordingly, cause all of us to pause and allow due process to prevail, not condemnation by fundamental dishonesty,” Brafman added.
Argento did not sue Weinstein and her allegations against him are not being used in his planned trial. Argento’s representatives have not yet responded to multiple requests for comment from various publications, including Fortune.