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Judge Drops Four Of 11 Sexual Assault Charges Against Harvey Weinstein

A Los Angeles judge has dropped four of the 11 sexual assault charges against Harvey Weinstein after prosecutors said they would not proceed with the counts involving one of his accusers.

Superior court Judge Lisa Lench dismissed two counts of forcible rape and two counts of forcible oral copulation against the 70-year-old Weinstein.

The move had appeared likely since the trial’s opening statements three weeks ago, when prosecutors during opening statements only mentioned four women Weinstein was charged with assaulting, leaving out the accuser identified in an indictment as Jane Doe 5.

The prosecutors at first kept the charges in place and left open the possibility that the woman would testify, while Weinstein’s defense had sought a definitive decision on the issue.

The Los Angeles county district attorney’s office has not provided an explanation for why they opted to leave the woman out of the trial.

The remaining charges against Weinstein, who is serving a 23-year sentence for a conviction in New York, are two counts of rape and five other sexual assault counts.

He has pleaded not guilty.

The move came on the second day of testimony from Jennifer Siebel Newsom, a documentary film-maker and the wife of California’s governor, Gavin Newsom, and the most prominent accuser so far to take the stand.

On Monday, Siebel Newsom described how, as a young actor, she met the Hollywood producer for what she thought was a business meeting at his hotel room. She broke down in tears several times while describing in graphic detail an alleged rape that left her filled with “tremendous shame”.

Siebel Newsom faces a cross examination from Weinstein’s defense team on Tuesday.

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