Harvey Weinstein's lawyer says ‘if a woman has sex to help her Hollywood career, it is not rape’

FP Staff

Mar,05 2018 11:38:45 IST

On the eve of Hollywood’s biggest public spectacle, the Oscar’s, Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer stirred up a hornet’s nest with his statement about sexual assault. Speaking on the sexual abuse allegations against the disgraced producer, Benjamin Brafman reduced rape to sex for career advancement, in an interview to The London Times.

Harvey Weinstein. Image from AP.

Harvey Weinstein. Image from AP.

The leading criminal defence attorney is known for handling high profile clients which involved celebrities such as P Diddy, Jay-Z, Michael Jackson. He had also represented Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former head of the IMF, who was accused of sexually assaulting a maid in a hotel suite.

Speaking defensively about his client, the lawyer said it wasn't Weinstein who invented casting couch. "If a woman decides that she needs to have sex with a Hollywood producer in order to advance her career and actually does it and finds the whole thing offensive, that’s not rape. You made a conscious decision that you’re willing to do something that is personally offensive in order to advance your career. Now, however offensive the whole saga may be on both of your parts, that’s not a crime. That’s bad in many ways, when you look at it. But that’s been the reputation of that industry [since] before I was born,” he tells The London Times, terming his client’s behaviour offensive and not criminal.

Weinstein has over 80 women accusers, with allegations ranging from forced oral sex to assault and rape. His accusers include several female celebrity actors, some of whose careers go back twenty years. Uma Thurman, Mira Sorvino and Daryl Hannah are some of these voices.

Terming his relationship with his client "interesting" and "close", the lawyer also mentions that he simply is not ready to condemn the producer just yet. To Brafman, Weinstein has just lived in times in which his behaviour might be viewed inappropriately.

Updated Date: Mar 05, 2018 11:38 AM