Weinstein could face longer sentence for alleged L.A.-based crimes

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LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein — found guilty today of rape and felony sex crime counts in New York — still faces serious charges in Los Angeles that could land him a longer prison sentence.

Weinstein, 69, was acquitted of the most serious New York charge — predatory sexual assault. In Los Angeles, he faces charges of rape, oral copulation and sexual penetration by force, as well as a fourth count of sexual battery by restraint.

Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey’s office declined to comment on the New York verdict. However, when the Los Angeles case was filed, she said Weinstein could face up to 28 years in prison if convicted of all counts.

The top conviction in New York could land him a maximum of 25 years behind bars, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The seven-man, five-woman New York jury deliberated for about 22 hours — and at one point indicated that they might be deadlocked — before returning with the guilty verdicts for crimes committed against two of the six women who testified that he had assaulted them.

Had the jury also found the one-time Hollywood mogul guilty of predatory sexual assault in the alleged attack on actress Annabella Sciorra, he could have been sentenced to 10 years to life in prison.

The defense argued repeatedly that all of the sex was consensual. However, Weinstein did not testify in his own defense.

Los Angeles prosecutors previously filed a motion to set bail in the Los Angeles case at $5 million, making it possible that Weinstein would be jailed while awaiting trial here.

As of now, he is awaiting sentencing in New York on March 11, and his attorney has said she will appeal the jury’s decision.

No date has been set for his arraignment in Los Angeles.

SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris said the actors’ union was looking ahead to the Los Angeles case.

“Justice was served today and Harvey Weinstein was held accountable for his crimes. But it is only a beginning. We look forward to the Weinstein prosecution in Los Angeles, where he will be brought to answer for other offenses,” she said.

“`We hail the courage and conviction of the powerful survivors who brought this case to trial and saw it through to the verdict,” Carteris added.

“This verdict sends a thunderous message to other harassers and abusers: You can’t run and you can’t hide any longer. Increasingly, if you harass or abuse, you will be reported, you will get caught and you will be prosecuted.”

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