"So news organizations are going to court to fight to keep the courtroom open for a major pretrial hearing ion Harvey Weinstein's sexual assault case. Now both sides, the prosecution and the defense, have asked the judge to close the courtroom and hold the hearing basically in secret. They say that they're doing this because there are going to be women who have accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct who will be in the courtroom and they want to protect those women's identities. The defense says that they want the courtroom closed because of the pretrial publicity that might taint the jury pool. The media organizations are arguing that that's nonsense because many of these women have come forward publicly with their names and faces in the news media. And there has been so much coverage already that practically everyone knows what Harvey Weinstein is accused of and ultimately the trial will be about the two women whose allegations have led to criminal charges."
New York - 11 October 2018
2. Harvey Weinstein gets out of car and walks into courthouse
New York - 25 April 2019
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Mike Sisak, AP Reporter:
"So, Harvey Weinstein's criminal case involves allegations from two women of the dozens of women who have come forward over the last year or so. Those women have not been identified publicly and many news organizations including The Associated Press have a policy where they will not identify those women in print or on broadcast unless they have given permission to do so. That said, there are many other women, Ashley Judd, Mira Sorvino, actresses, famous people who have come forward and accused Harvey Weinstein of misconduct and some of those women may potentially be used as witnesses by the prosecution to show the jury that this was not a one off or two off this was a pattern of violating women over many years."
New York - 28 April 2017
4. Various of Miramax Films co-founder and film producer Harvey Weinstein arriving at the 25th anniversary screening of 'Reservoir Dogs'
New York - 10 February 2016
5. Weinstein posing for photos with TV personality Sandra Lee at an amfAR gala
6. Weinstein talking to reporter
Los Angeles - 7 September 20166.
7. Various of Weinstein posing with Usher and Terry Lewis at Usher's Hollywood Walk of Fame ceremony
News organizations are fighting to pull back the curtain on a Harvey Weinstein court appearance that the prosecution and defense want held in secret.
The organizations, including The Associated Press and The New York Times, argued in court papers filed Monday that the sides haven't met a high legal standard for banning the media and the public from Friday's hearing in Weinstein's sexual assault case.
Prosecutors contend the hearing should be closed to protect Weinstein's right to a fair trial and for the privacy of women whose allegations against him are not part of the underlying criminal charges. Weinstein's lawyers say news coverage could taint the jury pool.
Prosecutors want the women to testify at Weinstein's June 3 trial to show he has had a pattern of violating women. They also expect to discuss evidence that could be used against Weinstein if he testifies.
A lawyer for the news organizations argues that holding the hearing behind closed doors would do nothing to safeguard Weinstein's right to a fair trial because allegations against him from more than 80 women have already been widely reported.
Many of those women, such as actresses Mira Sorvino and Ashley Judd, have agreed to be identified publicly.
Lawyers for the news organizations called closing the courtroom an "extreme remedy" and argued that as much as possible the hearing should be held in open court.
Weinstein is charged with raping an unidentified female acquaintance in his hotel room in 2013 and performing a forcible sex act on a different woman in 2006. Those women have not agreed to be publicly identified. The Associated Press does not identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they come forward publicly.
Weinstein has denied all allegations of nonconsensual sex. He pleaded not guilty and is free on $1 million bail. His trial is scheduled to begin June 3.
Judge James Burke said he would hear arguments from the news organizations' lawyers just before the start of Friday's hearing. The lawyers, in their filing, asked to be heard sooner so that they may appeal if he rules against them.
The news organizations are also requesting that documents filed under seal in the case be made public and that all future filings, even ones made under seal, be listed on the case docket so that "the public and press receive prompt notice that such materials exist."
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