FBI 'opens criminal investigation' over Harvey Weinstein sex claims

Ben Arnold
UK Movies Writer

The FBI is said to have opened an investigation into the claims of sexual assault and rape by Harvey Weinstein, over fears that he may flee the US.

According to the Daily Mail, the Department of Justice is behind the move, following allegations from dozens of women, including the likes of Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, and more recently Lea Seydoux and Cara Delevingne, that he either tried to or succeeded in sexually assaulting them.

It’s feared that if Weinstein leaves the country – it’s been rumoured that he’s planning to head to Europe to seek rehabilitation for sex addiction – that he may never return, as seen in the case of the director Roman Polanksi.

Polanksi fled the US in the 1970s fearing that a plea bargain he’d entered into over a rape charge was set to be overturned.

Despite numerous legal challenges, Polanski has never been extradited back to the States.

Among the dozens of allegations being made against Weinstein, who is responsible for bringing movies like ‘Pulp Fiction’ and ‘Shakespeare In Love’ to the screen, is that he forced Lucia Evans, a budding actress, to perform oral sex on him in 2004.

After the New Yorker this week revealed interviews with 13 women saying they’d been harassed or assaulted by Weinstein, it’s been confirmed that the NYPD has opened an investigation into the matter, according to DailyMail.com.

Unlike some states, New York has no statute of limitations on such sex crimes.

But now that the Department of Justice is involved, the case has been imbued with a notably more political bent.

Weinstein was a donor to Hillary Clinton’s failed presidential campaign, and president Donald Trump has railed against Hollywood’s unrelenting criticism of his administration.

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