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Harvey Weinstein Receives 23-Year Prison Sentence for Sex Crimes

Harvey Weinstein received a 23-year prison sentence on 11 March for sex crimes in New York.

In the culmination of a case that pushed the #MeToo Movement further into the headlines, Weinstein's sentencing is seen as a significant win for the movement which pushed to hold powerful men accountable for sex crimes like assault, harassment, and rape. New York Supreme Court Judge James Burke gave Weinstein 20 years for a criminal sex act and three more years for third-degree rape. The minimum sentence for both crimes was five years.

According to The Washington Post, prior to the sentencing, Mimi Haleyi and Jessica Mann read impact statements. Haleyi was Weinstein's production assistant whom he forced oral sex on. Mann, a former actress, was raped by Weinstein in 2013. The two women were joined in the courtroom by Weinstein's four other accusers. 

From a wheelchair, Weinstein claimed to have true friendships with Haleyi and Mann. He also said he viewed the large number of sexual misconduct allegations against powerful men as a modern-day McCarthy witchhunt, The New York Times reported.  

The Los Angeles County district attorney's office said they began the extradition process so that Weinstein will answer for charges there against assaults on two other women.

Although Weinstein was taken to the Rikers Island prison complex, he was redirected to a hospital after complaining about chest pains. 

Weinstein's attorneys said they will appeal the verdict and that Weinstein's age and medical condition mean that he will not likely outlive the 23-year sentence.

Factors such as workplace norms, the amount of diversity, and deference to "superstar" employees or industry leaders can provide fertile ground for harassment, according to a 2016 U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission report. Learn more about cultures of harassment in the April 2020 edition of Security Management.