Two weeks ago, another one of Harvey Weinstein’s many lawsuits was wrapped up into a tidy, yet gross, package, when the New York Attorney General’s office announced that an $18,875,000 compensation fund would be set up for nine of Harvey’s victims. Harvey’s settlements are being covered by his insurance company. But it’s now being reported that US District Court Judge Alvin Hellerstein released a statement today saying that he’s not going to approve that settlement, so someone better come up with a Plan B.
Nine women, who filed a 2017 civil rights lawsuit against convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein, were supposed to split nearly $19 million after agreeing to a settlement. Elizabeth Fegan, one of the lawyers leading the case, released a statement saying that she was pleased with the settlement, called it “meaningful relief,” and a victory for all women who come forward. New York Attorney General Letitia James called the settlement “justice.” That wasn’t everyone’s feelings. Attorneys Douglas H. Wigdor and Kevin Mintzer, who represent six of Harvey’s other victims, believed the settlement was a way for Team Harvey to throw money at the situation, thus making sure their old pal Mr. Yuck successfully avoids any further accountability for his actions. Attorneys Wigdor and Mintzer weren’t the only ones who had a problem with that settlement, and that would be why Judge Hellerstein killed the compensation fund. via Deadline:
“Based on my studies of the papers, based on my study of the objection papers, and based on the flaws that I have already noted, I will not give preliminary approval to the settlement,” declared Judge Alvin Hellerstein on Tuesday. “The idea that Harvey Weinstein can get a defense fund ahead of the claimants is obnoxious. The idea you can regulate the claims of people not in the settlement – I can’t subscribe to that,” he added.
This makes the settlement situation a little messy, because apparently everyone had signed off on it. The victims and their lawyers, lawyers for Harvey and his brother Bob Weinstein, a New York Attorney General, as well as former board members of The Weinstein Company and their insurance company, all reportedly agreed to the $18,875,000 amount. But according to Deadline, the deal left a gross taste in Judge Hellerstein’s mouth. Just saying the name Harvey Weinstein will do that to a person’s mouth, but the judge’s reason was because apparently that settlement would have actually made Harvey and his brother some money.
Estimated to have ended up being around $20,000 per victim when all the math was done, the agreement would have also totally absolved Weinstein, his brother and long term business partner and their former board from any liability without having to personally pay a dime. In fact, the “one-sided and unfair” settlement, as one critic called the long festering negotiation, would have seen the Weinsteins haul in over $15 million for their legal defense out of the deal – a reality that many including Judge Hellerstein found “unconscionable.”
How in the unfathomable fuck would the Weinstein brothers have made $15 million dollars? Did Harvey make some kind of Brewster’s Millions-style deal with The Devil, in which The Devil would fork over $15 million, so long as Harvey tried to go morally bankrupt by behaving as ghoulish and evil as humanly possible?
Judge Hellerstein added that he felt the “phony settlement” was a mess, because it awarded an equal split of money between accusations that might not be as serious as others. And Attorneys Wigdor and Mintzer chimed in with their thoughts on the “cruel hoax” of a settlement.
“On behalf of our clients, we look forward to pursuing justice against Harvey Weinstein and his many enablers.”
Deadline says that pursuing justice isn’t exactly going to be as easy as slapping down a settlement. COVID-19 has caused a backlog of legal cases. Not to mention that they’re going to have to get in line behind the other lawsuits on Harvey’s prison-issued aluminum plate. And then there’s the fact that Harvey’s last trial, where he was finally found guilty of rape, was drawn out over about 9 months. Also, Harvey is old-ish and allegedly not in the greatest of health, so who knows if he’ll even be around to see more justice done. Actually, scratch that. I’m sure that deal with The Devil involved some kind of Hell magic that granted extra years onto Harvey’s life because there’s no way he’d be able to accomplish so much evil in one regular human lifetime. How surprised The Devil must have been when Harvey clocked in all those evil hours in such a short amount of time. Really beat The Devil at his own game.