Harvey Weinstein’s bid to dismiss two counts of sexual assault against the former movie producer in his Los Angeles trial have been rejected by a judge after Weinstein’s attorneys claimed they were precluded by the statute of limitations.
Judge Sergio Tapia II told prosecutors that a third count of sexual battery by restraint, or Count 5, would need to be amended, which the defense also challenged over statute of limitations.
Weinstein last week pleaded not guilty to 11 charges of rape and sexual assault after being extradited to Los Angeles. The charges are connected to rape and assault allegations from five women, with the reported incidents taking place between 2004 and 2013.
Weinstein is being held without bail in the Twin Towers jail in downtown Los Angeles, and he was present at the Foltz Criminal Justice Center for a hearing on Thursday.
He was previously convicted of rape and sexual assault of two women in New York and sentenced to 23 years in prison.
Weinstein was first charged by previous L.A. District Attorney Jackie Lacey in January 2020 during the early stages of Weinstein’s New York trial. The Los Angeles trial was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has created a backlog of cases for the courts. Weinstein’s attorneys also sought to delay the trial by arguing that the producer could not be extradited to Los Angeles due to his failing eyesight and other health concerns.
If convicted, he could face a maximum of 140 years in prison, though he will be sent back to New York to serve the remainder of his sentence there following the Los Angeles trial. Defense attorneys have appealed the New York ruling, arguing that Weinstein was denied the right to a fair trial due to faulty rulings from the judge.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.