Judge charges Harvey Weinstein, approves moves to streamline Weinstein case.
A judge Friday dropped two counts of predatory sexual assault against disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein with the consent of prosecutors and defense lawyers.
The two counts were trimmed out to “simplify the issues at trial,” Assistant DA Joan Illuzzi-Orbon explained in court papers.
Last month, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office brought a new indictment containing two predatory sexual assault counts so “The Sopranos” actress Annabella Sciorra could testify against him.
The surprise move pushed his trial back by four months to January 6, 2020.
Illuzzi-Orbon asked Justice James Burke to dismiss the first indictment’s two predatory sexual assault counts and to consolidate the remaining charges with the new indictment.
The defense did not object to either request. But Weinstein’s attorneys Donna Rotunno and Arthur Aidala argued that the original predatory sexual assault counts had to be dismissed as a matter of law as they are duplicates of the new counts.
Prosecutors countered that the new charges actually represent separate crimes and did not violate double jeopardy in an argument they acknowledge is moot since both sides agreed to the dismissal.
The judge granted both motions, and Weinstein now faces five criminal charges in a single indictment, including two counts of predatory sexual assault, two counts of rape and one count of criminal sex act.
He’s accused of raping an unnamed woman in 2013 and performing a forcible sex act on production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006.
Although he’s not charged with raping Sciorra, her allegations support the two new counts of predatory sexual assault for which he faces up to life in prison.