Harvey Weinstein Sued for Sexual Assault by Former ‘Project Runway’ Production Assistant
Former “Project Runway” production assistant, Miriam Haley, sued tainted former Hollywood mogul, Harvey Weinstein, for sexual assault on Friday, October 30, 2020. Weinstein is facing separate sex-crimes lawsuits in Los Angeles, with 11 counts of rape, sexual battery, and other allegations.
In the federal lawsuit filed in US District Court in New York, Haley seeks punitive damages, unquantified compensation, and lawyer fees, for what she outlines as lasting sexual assault injuries that traumatized her “deeply, mentally and emotionally.”
Haley testified at the trial of Harvey Weinstein earlier this year. Her testimony at the New York criminal trial of Weinstein led to Weinstein’s conviction with a 20-year jail term.
Ms. Haley’s attorneys – Allred, Maroko & Goldberg, and Cuti Hecker Wang LLP – described a deliberate course of action on the part of Weinstein in using his influence and power to trap and sexually assault her.
Ms. Haley’s attorneys are seeking a jury trial in the civil suit. Michael White – an eminent global impresario and a mutual friend of Ms. Haley – reportedly introduced her to Mr. Weinstein in 2004.
In 2006, Ms. Haley had an encounter with the Hollywood Mogul at the Cannes film festival. During this period, Ms. Haley was looking to build her career in the entertainment industry. She shared her aspirations with Weinstein, who invited her to a rented hotel suite where she was allegedly sexually assaulted.
Ms. Haley was later offered an opportunity to work on “Project Runway” by Weinstein, whose company produced the show. On July 10, 2006, Ms. Haley alleges she again met Weinstein, this time at his Manhattan apartment in the neighborhood of Soho, and was assaulted by the plaintiff.
The incident “stripped her of her dignity as a human being and as a woman. It crushed her confidence and faith in people and herself,” according to the complaint.
According to Miriam Haley’s attorneys – the timing of the lawsuit is apt under the CPLR § 215 (8) (b), which states “whenever it is shown that criminal action against the same defendant has been commenced with respect to the event or occurrence from which a claim governed by this section arises, the plaintiff shall have at least one year from the termination of the criminal activity as defined in section 1.20 of the criminal procedure law in which to commence the civil action, notwithstanding that the time in which to commence such action has already expired or has less than a year remaining.”
Juda Engelmayer, a spokesman for Weinstein, stated that the suit supports the defense’s declaration that Ms. Haley fabricated the statement to “pave the way for civil damages claims.”