AceShowbiz - French filmmaker Luc Besson has been cleared of rape against an actress in Paris.
Sand Van Roy made the allegations against the director, who appeared for a lengthy closed hearing in the French capital on Monday (25Jan21).
Examining magistrate Marie-Claire Noiriel ruled in favour of Besson and his lawyer, Thierry Marembert, declaring the moviemaker an "assisted witness."
"This hearing in Paris is part of ongoing judicial proceedings that began with an investigation by the police and public prosecutor, which exonerated Luc Besson and found that no criminal acts had been committed," a spokesman for the director's EuropaCorp company tells Deadline. "Mr. Besson continues to fully co-operate with the authorities and to deny all accusations made against him, and he looks forward to clearing his name."
French prosecutors dropped their initial probe of Van Roy's 2018 sexual assault claims against Besson in 2019 due to insufficient evidence.
Eight other women came forward with sexual abuse accusations against the filmmaker after Van Roy went public with her claims.
One of his alleged victims was a former casting director. She said, "Very often, he just arrived and stood behind my back while I was coaching actors and he kissed me on the neck. On other occasions, he forced me to sit on his lap."
She continued, "Very often, Luc Besson asked me, in front of a technician, to give him oral sex, which I refused each time. Each time we were taking the elevator together, he forced me to kiss him, putting his tongue in my mouth, and, even though I was pushing him back, he was taking me in his arms and was touching my breasts and bottom."