New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has filed a lawsuit against Harvey Weinstein, The Weinstein Company and Robert Weinstein for “egregious violations” of New York’s civil rights, human rights and business laws.
“As alleged in our complaint, The Weinstein Company repeatedly broke New York law by failing to protect its employees from pervasive sexual harassment, intimidation, and discrimination,” Schneiderman said in a statement.
The suit includes new and past allegations of Weinstein’s “vicious and exploitative” mistreatment of company employees. That includes employees who claimed they were sexually harassed, intimidated and were subject to other forms of misconduct.
The lawsuit has delayed the expected sale of the Weinstein Company.
“Any sale of The Weinstein Company must ensure that victims will be compensated, employees will be protected going forward, and that neither perpetrators nor enablers will be unjustly enriched. Every New Yorker has a right to a workplace free of sexual harassment, intimidation, and fear,” Schneiderman said.
The suit claims that Weinstein told several employees that “I will kill you” and “I will kill your family.” He bragged about having contacts at the Secret Service that could take care of problems.
The suit also said that one group of female employees were forced to facilitate Weinstein’s sexual conquests. A second group was compelled to take various steps to further his sexual activity.
Schneiderman claimed that allegations of Weinstein’s misconduct were brought to the attention of The Weinstein Company’s human resources department and there was widespread knowledge of his actions. However, the suit said that executives and the Board didn’t take any meaningful steps to protect employees or stop Weinstein’s behavior.
An investigation continues.
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