Harvey Weinstein was sued on Friday by Miriam Haley, the former “Project Runway” production assistant whom Weinstein was found guilty earlier this year of forcibly sexually assaulting.
“Ms. Haley brings this action to obtain compensation for the pain, suffering, and economic injuries caused by Weinstein’s sexual assault,” the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York, said.
The lawsuit is seeking unspecified damages and a jury trial.
As detailed in the lawsuit, and as Haley testified to in late January during Harvey Weinstein’s Manhattan trial earlier this year, Haley said she first met Weinstein in 2004 at a party and later encountered him again in 2006 at the Cannes Film Festival. At that time, she was in need of employment and Weinstein helped her get a job as a production assistant on “Project Runway,” which was produced by The Weinstein Company.
Weinstein later invited her to come to his SoHo loft. After the two made small talk, Haley said Weinstein “lunged” at her and tried to kiss her. She said she told him “no” multiple times, Weinstein then maneuvered Haley into a bedroom until she fell onto the bed, Haley said in the lawsuit and during her testimony.
“Despite Ms. Haley’s continued resistance, Weinstein continued to pin her on the bed and forced himself on her orally, placing his mouth on her vagina. Ms. Haley was continuing to cry ‘no’ and told Weinstein again that she was on her period and wearing a tampon,” the lawsuit said. “Weinstein said, ‘well, where is it then’ or words to that effect. Then he pulled out the tampon and continued to orally sodomize Ms. Haley.”
In a statement, Weinstein’s representative said: “How shall we discern the veracity of this recent claim from the one she made saying this wasn’t about a civil damages claim? If I recall the trial correctly, Mimi Haley and the prosecution rebuffed Harvey’s defense team when they declared that these people, Haley included, were concocting these insincere charges to pave the way for civil damages claims. The response then – for the jury to hear – was, Ms. Haley was not involved in any civil cases or seeking financial damages against Harvey. I guess that was just another stage and another act. At least the truth is finally being uncovered.”
During the Manhattan trial, Weinstein’s attorneys sought to question the credibility of Haley by describing her as a “flirtatious person” who was “using [Weinstein] for jobs.”
The jury ultimately found Weinstein guilty of a first-degree criminal sexual act based on Haley’s testimony. He is currently serving out a 23-year prison sentence.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.