AceShowbiz - Harvey Weinstein's lawyer has filed a request to have the disgraced film boss' criminal trial moved from New York, claiming the "circus-like atmosphere" of the city means he won't get a fair hearing there.
The much-anticipated trial of the fallen movie mogul is set to begin on September 9, with Weinstein facing two counts of predatory sexual assault, one count of criminal sexual act in the first degree and one count each of first-degree rape and third-degree rape.
But in a bid to get Weinstein a "fair trial", one of his lawyers Arthur Aidala has filed a motion asking for it to be moved from New York to an upstate courthouse, such as Albany County or Suffolk County on Long Island.
"It is safe to say that New York City is the least likely place on earth where Mr. Weinstein could receive a fair trial, where jurors could hear evidence, deliberate, and render a verdict in an atmosphere free of intimidation from pressure to deliver a result that the politicians, the activists, the celebrities and the media demand," Aidala wrote in his request.
Citing the "circus-like atmosphere" of New York, Aidala continued to point out that Weinstein's name has been mentioned on the New York Post's gossip column Page Six website more than 11,000 times.
"It is difficult to conceive of a similar case in recent memory that has generated more inflammatory press coverage," he added.
It remains to be seen whether or not the request to have the trial moved will be granted. Weinstein has pleaded not guilty to all accusations of non-consensual sex but, if found guilty of the charges, he could spend the rest of his life behind bars.