Harvey Weinstein pleads not guilty to sexual assaults in California

Harvey Weinstein has pleaded not guilty to rape and sexual assault in California just one day after he was extradited to Los Angeles from New York on a private jet. 

The disgraced Hollywood producer, 69, was arraigned in a Los Angeles court on Wednesday on four counts of rape and seven other sexual assault counts related to alleged assaults dating back to 2004. 

Looking pale and seated in a wheelchair with his hands uncuffed, an ailing Weinstein was wheeled into the courtroom by LA Sheriff’s deputies for the five minute hearing. 

His attorney Mark Werksman entered the not guilty plea for the disgraced movie mogul less than 24 hours after Weinstein was extradited to California from New York where he is serving a 23-year prison term. 

Weinstein, who was dressed in brown prison overalls and a blue face mask, spoke only once throughout the hearing when he said ‘thank you very much’ to Judge Sergio Tapia after he had wished him ‘good luck’ as the hearing ended.     

It is not uncommon for Judge Tapia, who handles pre-hearing cases, to wish defendants luck before they go on to face trial judges.    

Disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, 69, was arraigned in a Los Angeles court on Wednesday

Weinstein, pictured in court Wednesday, is charged with assaulting five women in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills between 2004 to 2013

Weinstein, pictured in court Wednesday, is charged with assaulting five women in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills between 2004 to 2013

Harvey Weinstein pleaded not guilty to rape and sexual assault on Wednesday just one day after he was extradited to Los Angeles from New York on a private jet

Harvey Weinstein pleaded not guilty to rape and sexual assault on Wednesday just one day after he was extradited to Los Angeles from New York on a private jet 

During the brief court appearance, Weinstein’s attorney asked for a hearing to challenge counts 5, 6 and 7 – all relating to sexual assault charges – for statute of limitation reasons.

The judge scheduled a new court date for July 29. 

His attorney did not ask for bail and none was granted by Judge Tapia. 

Wersksman also submitted a written request for a medical evaluation to be conducted on Weinstein, which the judge granted. 

Weinstein is charged with assaulting five women in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills between 2004 to 2013. 

He is facing a maximum sentence of 140 years.  

The charges include four counts of forcible rape, three of forcible oral copulation, two of sexual battery by restraint and one of sexual penetration by use of force. 

The former movie mogul maintains his innocence and insists that any sexual activity was consensual.  

‘We are confident he will be acquitted of all the charges,’ Werksman told DailyMail.com prior to the hearing.   

The former movie mogul, pictured in court Wednesday, maintains his innocence

The former movie mogul, pictured in court Wednesday, maintains his innocence

His attorney Mark Werksman (above) entered the not guilty plea for the disgraced movie mogul less than 24 hours after Weinstein was extradited to California from New York where he is serving a 23-year prison term

His attorney Mark Werksman (above) entered the not guilty plea for the disgraced movie mogul less than 24 hours after Weinstein was extradited to California from New York where he is serving a 23-year prison term

Weinstein spoke only once throughout the hearing when he said 'thank you very much' to Judge Sergio Tapia (above) after he had wished him 'good luck' as the hearing ended

Weinstein spoke only once throughout the hearing when he said ‘thank you very much’ to Judge Sergio Tapia (above) after he had wished him ‘good luck’ as the hearing ended

Outside the courtroom, renowned women’s rights lawyer Gloria Allred – who represents one of Weinstein’s New York victims and two of his alleged victims in LA – told DailyMail.com: ‘I am happy that this day has come and I’m looking for a fair trial here in Los Angeles. 

‘Mr Weinstein and his defense have been delaying his extradition to Los Angeles for a long time. But he finally ran out of excuses.

‘It’s absurd that he claimed he needed to stay in New York because he needed medical care. We have excellent medical care here in LA.

‘I think that it’s important for him to face trial here in LA because some of his victims here have not had their day in court.

‘Justice may have been delayed in Los Angeles, but it’s not going to be denied.’  

Weinstein arrived back in Los Angeles on a private jet on Tuesday afternoon after being extradited from New York’s Wende Correctional Facility.

His attorneys had been fighting his extradition, claiming he shouldn’t be moved from his current prison in New York because of ongoing medical treatment.  

His attorney said the former movie mogul is suffering from a host of medical conditions.

‘He has spinal stenosis, he’s going blind in one eye, he’s missing teeth. He really needs urgent medical care,’ Werksman said.  

Weinstein is currently serving a 23-year sentence in New York's Wende Correctional Facility after a jury found him guilty in March 2020 of rape and sexual assault. He is pictured in February 2020 prior to his conviction

Weinstein is currently serving a 23-year sentence in New York’s Wende Correctional Facility after a jury found him guilty in March 2020 of rape and sexual assault. He is pictured in February 2020 prior to his conviction 

Outside the courtroom, renowned women's rights lawyer Gloria Allred - who represents one of Weinstein's New York victims and two of his alleged victims in LA - told DailyMail.com: 'I am happy that this day has come and I'm looking for a fair trial'

Outside the courtroom, renowned women’s rights lawyer Gloria Allred – who represents one of Weinstein’s New York victims and two of his alleged victims in LA – told DailyMail.com: ‘I am happy that this day has come and I’m looking for a fair trial’

Weinstein’s rep Juda Engelmayer told DailyMail.com that his lawyers had been trying to negotiate an agreement to wave extradition for transfer to LA.

‘We are disappointed that the LA DA didn’t wait for the judge’s ruling, but we did expect this to happen at some point,’ Engelmayer said. 

‘We will be fighting so that Harvey can receive his needed medical care and of course, so that he can be treated fairly. Due process, presumption of innocence and a fair trial are all still his right.’    

Weinstein is currently serving a 23-year sentence in New York’s Wende Correctional Facility after a jury found him guilty in March 2020 of rape and sexual assault. 

He was convicted of raping an aspiring actress in a New York City hotel room in 2013 and sexually assaulting a production assistant at his apartment in 2006 by forcibly performing oral sex on her. 

Weinstein’s time in custody in California will count toward his New York sentence, officials said. 

Los Angeles prosecutors first charged Weinstein in January 2020 just as jury selection was getting underway in the New York case.

More charges were added later in the year and he was indicted by an LA County grand jury in March.

The pandemic and procedural delays meant that Weinstein’s extradition took well over a year. 

Authorities appeared to help keep Weinstein - who now relies on a walker - upright as he walked down the stairs by holding onto a strap tied around his chest on Tuesday

Authorities appeared to help keep Weinstein – who now relies on a walker – upright as he walked down the stairs by holding onto a strap tied around his chest on Tuesday

Weinstein's attorneys had been fighting his extradition, claiming he shouldn't be moved from his current prison in New York because of ongoing medical treatment. He is pictured above during his last hearing before he was extradited

Weinstein’s attorneys had been fighting his extradition, claiming he shouldn’t be moved from his current prison in New York because of ongoing medical treatment. He is pictured above during his last hearing before he was extradited  

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