Weinstein Accuser Opens Up On Abuse (Photo Credit: Instagram)
New York :
One of Harvey Weinstein's main accusers told his rape trial that the ex-Hollywood producer forcibly performed oral sex on her in a children's bedroom in his New York home. Mimi Haleyi -- a former production assistant -- cried as she told the Manhattan court that Weinstein, 67, sexually assaulted her in July 2006 while she was on her period. She described how Weinstein, who was then three times her weight, initially appeared "friendly" before he backed her into a bedroom with children's drawings on the wall.
"He was kissing and fondling me," she said on Monday.
"I expressed to him the entire time that I don't want this to happen," Haleyi, added, sobbing.
Weinstein pushed her onto the bed and forcibly performed oral sex on her after pulling out her tampon, she said during the fourth day of testimony.
"Physically I was trying to get away (but) I figured it was pointless and I basically checked out," Haleyi, an assistant on realty TV show "Project Runway," told the court.
More than 80 women have accused Weinstein of sexual assault since allegations against him first ignited the #MeToo movement in October 2017.
But he faces charges related to just two women -- Haleyi, and actress Jessica Mann, who says Weinstein raped her in 2013.
Weinstein faces life in prison if convicted of the most serious charges against him, those of predatory sexual assault.
Finnish-born Haleyi said she opted not to report the alleged attack out of fear she would be expelled from the United States for failing to have a valid work visa.
"I thought going to the police wasn't an option for me," she said, adding that Weinstein "had a lot more power and connections" as well.
During cross-examination, defense attorney Damon Cheronis challenged Haleyi on why she had sent a friendly email to Weinstein around two years after the alleged incident.
The message said, "Hi Harvey, how are you? Great to see you," and was signed "Lots of Love." Weinstein claims all of his sexual relationships were consensual.