Movie mogul engaged fixers, lawyers and spies to intimidate actor over her allegations of rape, she says in lawsuit
The actor Rose McGowan alleges in a new lawsuit that the film mogul Harvey Weinstein took diabolical actions when he learned she was going to write in a memoir that the producer had raped her decades prior, engaging a team of fixers, lawyers and an international spy agency to intimidate and silence her.
This case is about a diabolical and illegal effort by one of Americas most powerful men and his representatives to silence sexual-assault victims. And it is about the courageous women and journalists who persisted to reveal the truth, the actor alleges in the lawsuit filed in a California federal court on Wednesday.
McGowans attorneys said in a statement that the defendants used unlawful tactics in a sprawling smear campaign to defraud, malign, and marginalize McGowan.
The suit, which includes claims of racketeering, violations of the Federal Wiretap Act, invasion of privacy, fraud and intentional infliction of emotional distress, names Weinstein, as well as the attorneys David Boies and Lisa Bloom and the private intelligence agency Black Cube.
McGowan claims in the suit that as she began work on a memoir, Brave, in which she planned to describe her allegations that Weinstein raped her in 1997, Weinstein enlisted Black Cube to obtain information about her book by posing as an advocate for women. (McGowan previously settled the allegation of the 1997 rape for $100,000.)
Blooms attorney says there is no basis for McGowans claims.
Weinsteins lawyer Phyllis Kupferstein told the Hollywood Reporter in response to the complaint that the claims were baseless.
Once and for all, Rose McGowan will be shown to be what she is: a publicity seeker looking for money, Kupferstein said. From the moment she sought a multimillion-dollar payout in return for not making these baseless allegations, which we rejected, we knew that she was waiting for an opportune time to begin this. We will demonstrate that this case has no legal merit.
McGowan was one of the earliest and most prominent of dozens of women, many of them celebrities, to accuse Weinstein of sexual misconduct. In fall 2017, the New York Times and the New Yorker began publishing claims of sexual harassment and abuse allegations against Weinstein that helped spark the #MeToo movement and a national reckoning about workplace harassment and sexual assault, exposing many other powerful men.
Bloom, who McGowan names in the suit, had once been a prominent attorney for victims rights, but went to work for Weinstein at a rate of $895 an hour to bury journalists investigations and discredit his accusers, the New York Times reported.
Two New York Times reporters, who broke the early accusations against Weinstein, write in a new book that Bloom specifically offered to help smear the reputation of McGowan. According to the book, Bloom told Weinstein: I feel equipped to help you against the Roses of the world, because I have represented so many of them, before describing a specific strategy to discredit accusers by portraying them as liars.
Weinstein has denied all allegations of non-consensual sex.
He is headed to trial next year and faces five charges including two counts of predatory sexual assault, a criminal sexual act, rape in the first degree, and rape in the third degree brought against him by the Manhattan district attorneys office.