Weinstein lawyers seek 5 years in jail for sex crime conviction

Former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein faces up to 29 years in prison after being found guilty of rape and sexual assault. (Reuters)
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Updated 10 March 2020

Weinstein lawyers seek 5 years in jail for sex crime conviction

  • Harvey Weinstein faces up to 29 years in prison after being found guilty of sexual assault and rape
  • Lawyers mentioned his poor health and age, as well as his ‘accomplishments’ and ‘charitable endeavors’ in asking for leniency

Lawyers for former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, who was convicted last month of rape and sexual assault, have asked a New York court to take into consideration his health and age and sentence him to prison for five years.
Weinstein, 67, faces up to 29 years in prison after being found guilty of sexually assaulting former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006 and raping former aspiring actress Jessica Mann in 2013.
“Please accept this letter as our request that the court sentence Mr. Weinstein to a period of incarceration of five years,” three of Weinstein’s lawyers said in a letter addressed to Justice James Burke of state Supreme Court in Manhattan.
Reuters saw a copy of the letter, which was signed by lawyers Damon Cheronis, Donna Rotunno and Arthur Aidala and dated Monday. Sentencing is due on Wednesday.
Weinstein’s conviction was a milestone for the #MeToo movement, which was fueled by his case starting in late 2017. The movement inspired women to accuse hundreds of powerful men — in entertainment, business, the media, politics and other fields — of sexual misconduct.
Last week, Weinstein was transferred to New York’s Rikers Island jail complex from Bellevue Hospital after undergoing a procedure to clear a heart blockage.
In their letter, Weinstein’s lawyers mentioned his poor health and age, as well as his “accomplishments” and “charitable endeavors.”
“His life story, his accomplishments, and struggles are simply remarkable and should not be disregarded in total because of the jury’s verdict,” they said.
Jurors acquitted Weinstein on the two most serious charges against him, predatory sexual assault, which carried a maximum life sentence.
New York prosecutors said last week Weinstein should get a prison sentence that reflects not only his conviction for sexually assaulting two women, but a “lifetime of abuse toward others.”
Throughout his adult life, Weinstein has shown a “staggering lack of empathy, treating others with disdain and inhumanity,” Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance’s office said in a letter to Burke.
Weinstein, who reshaped the independent film industry with critically acclaimed pictures such as “The English Patient” and “Shakespeare in Love,” fell from grace after more than 70 women, most of them young actresses and others in the movie business, accused him of rape and sexual misconduct dating back decades.
He denied the accusations and said any sexual encounters were consensual.
In addition to his convictions in New York, Weinstein faces several felony charges in Los Angeles in connection with alleged sexual assaults against two women in 2013.


Florida offers drive-through Botox to quarantined residents

Updated 04 June 2020

Florida offers drive-through Botox to quarantined residents

  • US state allowed a partial relaxing of restrictions imposed to slow the coronavirus pandemic
  • Elective medical procedures resume, including Botox injections and cosmetic surgery

MIAMI: Quarantined Florida residents worried about their laughter lines and crows’ feet need frown no longer — Botox is back, and it’s being offered at a drive-through.
On May 4, the US state allowed a partial relaxing of restrictions imposed to slow the coronavirus pandemic. That means certain elective medical procedures could resume, including Botox injections and cosmetic surgery.
Michael Salzhauer, a plastic surgeon known as ‘Dr. Miami’ who has also starred in a reality television show, has been conducting drive-through Botox injections in the garage of his building in the posh Miami neighborhood of Bal Harbor.
Salzhauer said the idea struck him as he was sitting in his car waiting for a blood test for COVID-19 antibodies.
“The areas that we inject Botox are the upper face, exactly the parts of the face that aren’t covered by the mask so it’s really ideal,” Salzhauer said, while wearing a mask, face shield and surgical gown as he waited for his next drive-up patient.
Patients sign up online, paying an average of $600 each for a stippling of shots across their foreheads.
Arman Ohevshalom, 36, was enthusiastic as he waited in line with his wife in their car, although it was their first time receiving the injections.
“It’s very creative, and after seeing how they’re running it I feel just as comfortable as I would in the office,” he said.
Florida’s tattoo artists, however, are frustrated. Shuttered since March, they asking why they cannot open, too.
Botox injections are “kind of like tattooing, he’s injecting stuff into the skin,” said tattoo shop owner Chico Cortez. Florida is home to about 10,000 working tattoo artists, according to the Florida Professional Tattoo Artist Guild.
An emailed statement from a Miami-Dade County spokesperson said Mayor Carlos Gimenez has yet to set a date for reopening tattoo shops. “He is working with industry members and the medical experts to come up with the best way to reopen safely,” it said.