UPDATE: Back in June, it was announced that women who experienced a hostile work environment, sexual harassment and gender-based discrimination while working at The Weinstein Company or women who experienced sexual abuse by Harvey Weinstein are entitled to receive restitution, pending approval from a judge. The to-be-determined sum that these individuals will receive will come from a $18,875,000 victims' compensation fund.
But on Tuesday morning, a federal judge in New York rejected the proposed settlement.
"We have been saying for over a year and a half that the settlement terms and conditions were unfair and should never be imposed on sexual assault survivors. We were surprised that class counsel and the New York Attorney General did not recognize this fact but are pleased that Judge Hellerstein swiftly rejected the one-sided proposal," Douglas H. Wigdor, an attorney for several of the Weinstein accusers, shared in a statement to E! News. "On behalf of our clients, we look forward to pursuing justice against Harvey Weinstein and his many enablers."
Per the original agreement, that was negotiated by N.Y. Attorney General Letitia James, any individual who previously signed a non-disclosure agreement related to any sexual misconduct by Harvey Weinstein, are hereby released from said contract.
A tentative deal has been reached in the civil case against Harvey Weinstein, the New York Times reports.
Back in 2017, the movie producer was accused of nearly 30 years of sexual misconduct, claims which he has continued to deny. On Wednesday, Weinstein appeared in a New York City courtroom, via a walker, for a hearing on his criminal sexual assault case. Following his court appearance on Wednesday, a NYT report, citing lawyers involved in the negotiations, stated that a tentative deal had been made between Weinstein, his former film company, and his accusers.
According to the report, this is a tentative $25 million settlement agreement with "dozens of his alleged sexual misconduct victims." In the terms of this deal, Weinstein would not have to admit he did anything wrong or pay the money himself. It would instead be paid by insurance companies that represent The Weinstein Company, which filed for bankruptcy in 2018.
The settlement still needs final signoff and court approval, but has reportedly gotten "preliminary approval."
In response to the settlement, attorneys Douglas H. Wigdor and Kevin Mintzer—who represent Wedil David and Jane Doe (Wigdor LLP also represents one of the Molineux witnesses who will be testifying at the criminal trial)—tell E! News, "We reject the notion that this was the best settlement that could have been achieved on behalf of the victims. It is shameful that $12 million of the settlement is going to the lawyers for the directors who we alleged enabled Harvey Weinstein and it is even more outrageous that the proposed settlement will seek to bind non participating members by providing a release to the insurance companies and the directors of the Weinstein Company itself."
The statement continues, "While we don't begrudge victims who want to settle, we plan to vigorously object to any provision that tries to bind victims who want to proceed with holding Harvey Weinstein accountable for his actions which is exactly what we intend to do."
According to the NYT report on the deal, "Eighteen of the alleged victims would split $6.2 million, with no individual getting more than $500,000. A separate pot of money, $18.5 million, would be set aside for those who were part of a class-action case, the New York attorney general's suit and any future claimants, with a court-appointed monitor allocating payments based on the severity of the harm alleged."
In response to the terms of the deal, Time's Up tweeted Wednesday, "Here's a math problem: 18 of 80+ victims split $6.2M. $12M+ goes towards legal fees for Harvey Weinstein, Bob Weinstein & The Weinstein Company board. Here's a bigger problem: If this is the best the survivors could get, the system is broken."
Back in 2018, Weinstein surrendered to authorities in NYC and was charged with rape, a criminal sex act, sex abuse and sexual misconduct for incidents involving two separate women.
"The NYPD thanks these brave survivors for their courage to come forward and seek justice," a spokesperson for the NYPD said in a statement at the time. "The arrest and ensuing charges are the result of a joint investigation between the NYPD and the Manhattan District Attorney's Office."
"This is an extraordinary case in my judgment, where the only rape victim that Mr. Weinstein is accused of raping is someone who he has had a 10-year consensual sexual relationship with," attorney Benjamin Brafman shared with reporters via the New York Times. "There is a confluence of concerns that make me concerned that it's going to be difficult for people who are judging this case to keep an open mind and be fair...I think at the end of the day Mr. Weinstein will be exonerated of these charges."
Weinstein was then indicted on rape and sex crime charges. Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. released a statement on Weinstein's indictment at the time in May 2018, stating, "A Grand Jury has voted to indict Harvey Weinstein on charges of Rape in the First and Third Degrees, and Criminal Sexual Act in the First Degree."
Weinstein plead not guilty. He was later released on $1 million bail, though his bail was increased to $2 million in court today. His case is set to go to trial in January.
Weinstein's representatives have yet to comment on a possible settlement.
(This story was previously published on Wednesday, Dec 11, 2019 at 12:25 p.m. ET.)