Meryl Streep condemns Harvey Weinstein lawyers who quoted her in ‘exploitive’ legal defense

Actress Meryl Streep arrives for the premiere of "The Post" on December 14, 2017, in Washington, DC.(MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

After attorneys for Harvey Weinstein quoted Meryl Streep as part of an attempt to dismiss a sexual misconduct lawsuit filed against him, the actress responded by denouncing the lawyer’s tactics as misleading, “pathetic and exploitive.” Six of Weinstein’s alleged victims — Louisette Geiss, Katherine Kendall, Zoe Brock, Sarah Ann Masse, Melissa Sagemiller, and Nannette Klatt — had filed a suit alleging racketeering by Weinstein, his former production companies, law firms, and the Israeli security firm, Black Cube, which famously employed former Israeli intelligence operatives to spy on and intimidate Rose McGowan and other Weinstein victims. The suit claims that the way the defendants worked together to conceal Weinstein’s transgressions was a form of organized crime — a network that the suit defined as the “Weinstein Sexual Enterprise.”

On Tuesday, lawyers for Weinstein filed a motion to dismiss on the basis that the class-action status of the allegations made them apply to “all women who ever met with Weinstein, regardless of whether they claimed to have suffered any identifiable harm.” The motion proceeded to mention Streep by name, noting that she had released a statement in October saying that Weinstein “had always been respectful to her in their working relationship.”

Streep, for one, does not think that Weinstein should be left off the hook just because she herself wasn’t victimized by him.

Harvey Weinstein.(Photo by Alexander Koerner/Getty Images)

“Harvey Weinstein’s attorneys’ use of my (true) statement — that he was not sexually transgressive or physically abusive in our business relationship — as evidence that he was not abusive with many OTHER women is pathetic and exploitive,” said Streep in a statement. “The criminal actions he is accused of conducting on the bodies of these women are his responsibility, and if there is any justice left in the system he will pay for them — regardless of how many good movies, made by many good people, Harvey was lucky enough to have acquired or financed.”

On Thursday, Weinstein, through a spokesperson, apologized for citing Streep and also Jennifer Lawrence by name in the legal motion, Variety reported. Weinstein, the spokesperson said, has not instructed his attorneys to stop identifying people by name in legal documents. “No specific names [will] be used by his counsel, even where those actors have made previous public statements about him,” the statement said.

Read the full story at The Hollywood Reporter.


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