Police in Beverly Hills, New York, London and Los Angeles are currently investigating multiple sexual assault allegations against disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. But now, a sex trafficking lawsuit has also been added to the mix.
Aspiring British actress Kadian Noble has filed an 11-page complaint against Weinstein, which also names his brother, Bob Weinstein, and The Weinstein Company as defendants.
According to the lawsuit, Weinstein “groomed” Noble with a “promise of a film role, knowing that he would use means of force, fraud or coercion to cause her to engage in a sex act.”
The alleged sexual predator invited her to his room at Le Majestic Hotel during the Cannes Film Festival in 2014, where he reportedly began massaging her shoulders while telling her she needed to relax and that he would “take care of everything” for her.
Weinstein then apparently called a TWC producer who told Noble she needed to be “a good girl and do whatever [Weinstein] wished.” If she did, they “would work” further with her, said the suit.
After the phone call, Weinstein allegedly pulled the resisting Noble to him and groped her breasts. He then pushed her into the bathroom, blocked her exit, groped her all over her body and forced her to perform sexual acts on him.
When the horrifying ordeal was over, Weinstein allegedly told her “his people” would be in touch with her.
Noble said she suffered severe trauma, injuries and permanent damage because of the brutal assault.
The lawsuit also stated Weinstein’s brother “facilitated commercial sex acts in foreign commerce.”
Jeffrey Herman, Noble’s attorney, filed the lawsuit under both criminal and civil statutes, which some believe is quite a “creative” strategy.
There is a statute of limitations of five years when it comes to civil sexual assault claims. However, the claims for sex trafficking can be brought within 10 years of the alleged incident.
“This lawsuit is basically combining the best of both worlds. The attorney is citing a criminal statute that can typically only be applied by a prosecutor, and through that suit he’s also seeking a civil remedy, which if successful, would result in monetary damages,” said former federal prosecutor Stanley L. Friedman.
According to the attorney, the lawsuit could prompt prosecutors to seek criminal charges and also get financial settlement. Noble’s lawyer will “be very aggressive and take discoveries as soon as possible,” said Friedman. If there is strong evidence, it will help in convicting Weinstein.
However, some attorneys believe the move is pretty far-fetched.
Arthur Aidala, a New York City trial attorney, said although the tactic is “quite unique,” it “really pushes the essence of this law to its limits.”
"They are trying to do some legal maneuvering and some slick lawyering, bringing in his brother and his company — that is what we call going after the deeper pockets," he told BuzzFeed News.
I have a hard time believing a judge would find that Weinstein is a sex trafficker and that his business is a sex trafficking enterprise, but... if that's really the premise of this suit? Then any of the women he assaulted could sue similarly. https://t.co/EFIkoLqKQc— Melissa Gira Grant (@melissagira) November 27, 2017
Yeah it does. It's alleged that he locked Kadian Noble in the bathroom until she agreed. That's kidnapping, folks.— ???????23 (@adastra23) November 27, 2017
‘Commercial sex acts’ usually = prostitution. Here, British actress plaintiff uses it to refer to Weinstein’s casting couch https://t.co/vA5aVn4HDC— Elizabeth Nolan Brown (@ENBrown) November 28, 2017
The lawsuit came on the same day as a civil claim in the United Kingdom from an anonymous woman who said Weinstein forced her into sex.
Both of the U.K. cases arrived after dozens of other women around the world revealed similar experiences with Weinstein — including Rose McGowan, Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow.
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: REUTERS/Steve Crisp