AceShowbiz - Harvey Weinstein has been charged with rape and other counts of sexual abuse involving two women.
The disgraced movie mogul handed himself in at a New York Police Department precinct on Friday, May 25, hours after officials working for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. announced that they had enough evidence to charge him.
After Weinstein surrendered, New York Police Department (NYPD) chiefs disclosed that he was charged with rape, a criminal sex act, sex abuse and sexual misconduct.
"The NYPD thanks these brave survivors for their courage to come forward and seek justice," a spokesperson said in a statement. "The arrest and ensuing charges are the result of a joint investigation between the NYPD and the Manhattan District Attorney's Office. Additional information will be provided as it becomes available."
According to The Associated Press, law enforcement officials have disclosed that the sex act charge stems from an encounter with Lucia Evans, who has alleged that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on him during what she anticipated would be a casting meeting in 2004. The other rape charge relates to a woman who has not yet been publicly identified.
The 66-year-old has consistently denied any allegations of nonconsensual sex.
Following his arrest, Weinstein was pictured emerging from the police station in handcuffs en route to a New York City courthouse, where he remained quiet as his lawyers agreed he would post $1 million (£700,000) bail and wear an electronic monitoring device.
He also surrendered his passport and agreed not to travel beyond New York or Connecticut.
Weinstein did not enter a plea in court but his criminal defense attorney, Benjamin Brafman, stated to reporters that he planned to enter a plea of not guilty.
"We intend to move very quickly to dismiss these charges. We believe that they are constitutionally flawed," he said. "We believe that they are not factually supported by the evidence and we believe that at the end of the process Mr. Weinstein will be exonerated."
Weinstein has received a grand jury notice and will have until May 30 to opt to testify or not. The next hearing is scheduled for July 30.
Since exposes were published in major U.S. publications in early October, over 80 women including some celebrities, have accused Weinstein of harassment and assault, as well as paying or coercing them to stay silent.
The scandal has cost Weinstein his marriage to Marchesa fashion designer Georgina Chapman, his position on the board of The Weinstein Company, and various accolades.