Prosecutors drop rape case against Gerard Depardieu

FILE - In this Monday, Nov. 14, 2016 file photo, actor Gerard Depardieu attends the premiere of the movie "Tour de France", in Paris. A French judicial official says rape and sexual assault accusations against actor Gerard Depardieu are the subject of a preliminary investigation it was reported on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus, File)
Gerard Depardieu (Credit: AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

Prosecutors in Paris have dropped the rape case against French actor Gerard Depardieu.

The 70-year-old Green Card star was accused of rape and sexual assault by an unnamed 22-year-old actress and dancer in August of last year.

But the prosecutor's office has said that it will not be going ahead with the case.

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In a statement via Reuters, it said: “A number of investigations undertaken as part of this procedure have not enabled us to characterize the crimes alleged in all of their individual parts.”

Depardieu fought the claims through his legal representation, his attorneys saying that he 'absolutely denies any rape, any sexual assault, any crime', dismissing the accusations as 'groundless'.

The incidents were alleged to have taken place on August 7 and August 13 at Depardieu's home in Paris, with the complaints being filed days later in Aix-en-Provence in Southern France.

French actor Gerard Depardieu, shown in a scene of the movie "The man with iron mask" (AP Photo/UIP-H0)
Depardieu in The Man In The Iron Mask" (Credit: AP Photo/UIP-H0)

The actor's accuser said that she was seeking professional advice from him.

Depardieu, famed for his roles in Cyrano de Bergerac and The Man In The Iron Mask, has long been a controversial figure in cinema.

He famously quit his native France in 2013 in protest over a hike in taxation.

The actor then cosied up to Vladimir Putin, who presented him with Russian citizenship.

French prosecutors also dropped an investigation into rape allegations facing Fifth Element director Luc Besson in February this year.