Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey is a “sexual bully” who “delights in making others feel powerless and uncomfortable”, a court has heard.
The Hollywood star, 63, was described by the prosecution as a “man who sexually assaults other men” as he stood trial at Southwark Crown Court on Friday.
Christine Agnew KC told the court: “Kevin Spacey Fowler is an actor; many of you will already know that.
“He is an extremely famous actor who has won a number of awards.
“He is also, the prosecution allege, a man who sexually assaults other men.
“A man who does not respect personal boundaries or space, a man who it would seem delights in making others feel powerless and uncomfortable, a sexual bully.”
Spacey, described by one of his alleged victims as “a star, a golden boy”, denies 12 charges, including sexual assault and indecent assault.
Ms Agnew said the jury will hear from four men during the trial, all aged in their 20s or 30s, who attracted the attention of Spacey.
She said: “None of the men wanted to be touched by Kevin Spacey Fowler in a sexual way, but he doesn’t seem to have cared very much for their feelings.
“He did what he wanted to do for his own personal sexual gratification.
“What does the defendant say in answer to these allegations?
“Well in relation to some he suggests that they are quite simply made up.
“In relation to others, he accepts that there was a sexual encounter between him and the other man but asserts that anything that took place would have taken place with the consent of the other man.”
The prosecutor warned jurors not to be “star struck” by the actor – urging them to “keep yourself grounded and true to the oath that you have taken”.
As she detailed allegations made by one of the complainants, Ms Agnew said it “may well be” that Spacey got a “sexual thrill” from the aggression he is alleged to have used against the man.
The prosecutor said the defendant had engaged in “inappropriate and unwelcome” touching with the man, before it allegedly progressed to “occasions when Kevin Spacey Fowler would actually grab and grope” him.
Another of Spacey’s alleged victims recalled the actor making “crude and seedy sexual remarks” before grabbing him in “an aggressive manner”.
The complainant said he was grabbed with “such force it was painful” and that he pushed him away, saying “no, I’m not like that.”
Ms Agnew added that Spacey “simply laughed” after the complainant pushed him away.
The prosecutor said a third complainant recalled “feeling vulnerable” and “thinking that perhaps this was just how people in the acting world acted” following an alleged encounter at Spacey’s flat.
Ms Agnew said the man recalled he had either “fell asleep or passed out” at the flat and after an alleged unwanted sexual advance from the actor, the complainant “sat and cried” at a bus stop at 5am.
The fourth alleged victim said he and Spacey had engaged in an “awkward man hug” at a property where the actor was staying, before the defendant “kissed his neck twice” while saying “be cool, be cool”.
Ms Agnew said Spacey then grabbed the man sexually before the alleged victim left the property “in a bit of a panicky state”.
The prosecutor told the jury that the defendant was interviewed by the Metropolitan Police in New York in May 2019 about three of the complainants’ allegations, before a further interview about the fourth complainant in November 2022.
Ms Agnew said Spacey is set to argue that two of the complainants were “motivated” by “financial compensation” and that he either had “no recollection” of the alleged encounters or they were “consensual”.
Concluding her opening remarks to the jury, prosecutor Ms Agnew said Spacey had “abused the power and influence that his reputation and fame afforded him”.
She told the jury: “Four men, unknown it seems to each other, all make serious sexual allegations against Kevin Spacey Fowler. Are they lying?
“Have they decided to manufacture allegations against the defendant in order to benefit financially?
“Is that why they’ve come forward – that will almost certainly be suggested to you by those representing the defendant.
“Or is it the case, as we the prosecution suggest, that Mr Spacey Fowler abused the power and influence that his reputation and fame afforded him; taking advantage of his popularity and prominence, his illustriousness and influence.
“Taking what and who he wanted when he wanted.”
The actor pleaded not guilty in January to three counts of indecent assault, three counts of sexual assault and one count of causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent.
The two-time Academy Award winner also previously denied four further charges of sexual assault and one count of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent.