NY attorney general files civil rights suit against Harvey Weinstein, Weinstein Co

12 February, 2018, 02:11 | Author: Rachel Mcdaniel
  • The lawsuit presents an obstacle for ex Obama administration official Maria Contreras-Sweet's bid for the company

NY state has confirmed it will sue The Weinstein Company, alleging the studio failed to protect employees from owner and movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

Schneiderman's complaint details Harvey Weinstein issuing threats to TWC employees and the fact that the company had "a group of female employees whose primary job it was to accompany HW (sic) to events and to facilitate HW's sexual conquests", the complaint states.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said on Sunday he had filed the suit against the Weinstein Company, Mr Weinstein himself, and his brother Robert.

The suit says that the investigation shows that the head of human resources at Weinstein's company was not empowered to do anything about his ongoing sexual harassment of female employees.

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In addition, investigators also said they discovered that Weinstein threatened to kill employees and their family members, and made quid pro quo offers or demands of sexual favors in exchange for career advancement.

It accuses the company's board and executives of repeatedly failing to take adequate steps to protect staff or curb Weinstein's behavior, despite multiple complaints. "Every New Yorker has a right to a workplace free of sexual harassment, intimidation, and fear". Schneiderman is seeking to have oversight of the company even after a sale given the level of violations outlined in the complaint.

The suit comes after a four-month investigation by the Attorney General's office into mounting allegations against Weinstein and The Weinstein Company.

As Variety noted, this lawsuit has come at a precarious time for TWC and an investor group led by Maria Contreras-Sweet, which was in talks to buy the company for $500 million, including $225 million in assumed debt. Reuters reported that negotiations are now on hold.

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