Kevin Spacey pleads not guilty to five charges in sexual assault court case
Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey has pleaded not guilty to five allegations of sexual abuse and will stand trial in June next year.
The 62-year-old Usual Suspects star is accused of offences against three different men between 2005 and 2013, during the period when he was artistic director at the Old Vic theatre.
Wearing a light blue suit and dark-rimmed spectacles, Spacey took his seat in the dock of courtroom one at the Old Bailey for Thursday morning’s hearing with packed rows of journalists watching on.
Spacey was asked to confirm his full name – Kevin Spacey Fowler – and his date of birth before repeating ‘not guilty’ five times to the charges he faces.
At the last hearing, at Westminster magistrates court, the star’s barrister Patrick Gibbs QC said: “Mr Spacey strenuously denies any and all criminality in this case.”
Mr Justice Wall ordered Spacey to stand trial on June 6 next year, in a case that is expected to last up to four weeks. He said either the Old Bailey or Southwark crown court would host the trial.
The judge refused a request from Spacey’s legal team for the case to be delayed until November next year, calling it a “non-starter” and saying that would be “too long” to wait.
Mr Gibbs told the court he is likely to have to step down from representing Spacey, as he is already committed to a trial at the same time next summer.
“Suddenly one of the people who has been advising him will now be taken away from him”, the barrister told the court, revealing he has been advising Spacey since 2018.
Spacey was flanked by Old Bailey security guards and a police officer as he entered the famous courthouse, appearing momentarily ruffled by the attention of photographers before regaining his composure.
Spacey is accused of two sexual assaults involving “intentional and sexual touching” in March 2005 in London on a man who is now in his 40s.
It is said he sexually assaulted a second man who is now in his 30s in London in August 2008, and faces a further charge of causing him to perform oral sex without consent.
The final charge dates back to April 2013, when a man now in his 30s says he was sexually assaulted by Spacey in Gloucestershire.
It is said the sexual assaults took place when the alleged victims “did not consent and (Spacey) did not reasonably believe that he was consenting”.
Spacey, who won two Oscars for his turns in American Beauty and The Usual Suspects, had a highly successful stint as the artistic director at the Old Vic theatre in London between 2004 and 2015.
The star of films including LA Confidential, Seven, and 2017’s Baby Driver, who is also a Tony, Golden Globe, and BAFTA winner, has rarely appeared on camera since sexual misconduct allegations were first raised against him.
He was presented with an honorary knighthood from Prince Charles, and when the UK criminal charges were first announced, Spacey issued a statement saying: “While I am disappointed with their decision to move forward, I will voluntarily appear in the UK as soon as can be arranged and defend myself against these charges, which I am confident will prove my innocence.”
In negotiations over the trial date, Mr Gibbs said Spacey is having to contend with civil proceedings in the US: “We can’t guarantee we will be ready before June next year”, he told the judge.
Spacey, who gave an apartment in Waterloo as his address, replied “thank you my lord” as the hearing drew to a close, and he was released on unconditional bail until his trial.