Weinstein Scandal: Disgraced Mogul Sentenced to 23 Years in Prison

Harvey Weinstein been sentenced to 23 years in a New York State prison on charges of sexual assault and third-degree rape. He will be formally registered as a sex offender.

It’s the culmination of a stunning fall for a man who was one of the most influential and powerful figures in Hollywood.

Before the sentencing was delivered, Weinstein addressed a packed Manhattan courtroom and said he had “deep remorse.” But he showed little contrition. In a rambling speech he also pushed back at the #MeToo movement, implying that it had gone too far.

“I am totally confused,” he said. “I think men are confused about all of this…this feeling of thousands of men and women who are losing due process, I’m worried about this country.”

“This is not the right atmosphere in the United States of America,” Weinstein added. Weinstein said he had “serious friendships” with the two primary accusers in the case, Miriam Haley and Jessica Mann.

Both women delivered “victim impact” statements before Burke issued the sentence. Haley, who says she was sexually assaulted by Weinstein in his apartment in 2006, told the judge that she was left emotionally damaged by the incident.

“It scarred me deeply, mentally and emotionally,” she added. “What he did not only stripped me of my dignity as a human being and a woman, but it crushed my confidence.”

Mann, who testified that Weinstein raped her over the course of an abusive relationship, said his abuse had also had a negative impact on her life. “I don’t know how to explain the horrors of being raped by someone who has power,” Mann added. “The impact on the psyche is profound. Rape is not just one moment…it is forever.”

As Mann and Haley spoked, Weinstein looked on, appearing to be in a state of stunned disbelief. Afterwards, he apologized to both women.

Weinstein was wheeled into court in a wheelchair, where prosecutors urged Justice James Burke to give him the “maximum sentence” of 29 years. His attorneys urged Justice James Burke on Monday to sentence him to the minimum, five years, citing his poor health and advanced age.

Weinstein’s attorney Donna Rotunno pushed back at Mann and Haley’s characterization of the former mogul as an all-powerful figure. His wealth and celebrity, she implied, had actually hurt his case.

Weinstein has been held since last Thursday at Rikers Island, but will soon be turned over to the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.

Weinstein’s fall in October 2017 led to an industry-wide reckoning in the entertainment business. It was one that saw other high-profile Hollywood figures such as Les Moonves, Kevin Spacey, Charlie Rose, Brett Ratner, and Bryan Singer accused of sexual misconduct. The allegations, published by the New York Times and the New Yorker, made against Weinstein were far more expansive than the criminal charges he faced. He was accused of assault and harassment by dozens of women. On Wednesday, the Silence Breakers, a group of Weinstein accusers that includes actresses Ashley Judd, Rose McGowan, and Rosanna Arquette, said that it would continue to push for cultural change.

“Weinstein’s legacy will always be that he’s a convicted rapist,” the group said in a statement. “He is going to jail – but no amount of jail time will repair the lives he ruined, the careers he destroyed, or the damage he has caused.”