A women's advocacy group will rally to denounce Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. for not prosecuting disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein for the alleged groping of a model in 2015.
He denied specifically that any donations to his campaign had or would ever influence his decisions. "Boies has also done work for many years for The Weinstein Co". However, after unrelated details in Gutierrez's past reportedly began to emerge, Vance's office decided not to file any charges. Weinstein was accused of sexual assault in 2015, and Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr. were investigated earlier this decade for allegedly misleading real estate buyers.
The Manhattan district attorney's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment. However, Boies' law firm, Boies Schiller Flexne, denies any connection between the donations and Vance's decision to not charge Weinstein.
"They had no impact on my thinking", Vance said Wednesday at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Manhattan.
Ossorio said this wasn't the first time she was perplexed by the DA's decision not to prosecute a sex crime suspect.
The district attorney was responding to questions from reporters in NY as a series of explosive, investigative reports tilt the national spotlight to Vance, whose winding career is now clashing with two of the most controversial names in the country. The story included an audio recording of a New York Police Department sting operation in 2015, which was set up after a young model, Ambra Battilana Gutierrez, told authorities that she was groped by Weinstein.
Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. at a press conference
Had Weinstein been charged, a law-enforcement source told the New Yorker, he would have most likely faced a count of sexual abuse in the third degree, a misdemeanor that could have resulted in a maximum of three months in jail.
On Tuesday, Manhattan's District Attorney office released a statement defending its decision.
Harvey Weinstein issued a statement apologizing for his behavior after a New York Times report on sexual assault allegations made by several women over the years.
Chief Assistant District Attorney Karen Friedman said that if the office could have prosecuted Weinstein for the conduct that occurred in 2015, "we would have" and that after the complaint was made in 2015, the NYPD - without their knowledge or input - arranged a controlled call and meeting between Gutierrez and Weinstein. "We really are based on facts, not what people think about it, whether people like Harvey or not", Vance said. Vance subsequently dropped the case after Trump's attorney, Marc Kasowitz, contributed $31,000 to his campaign in 2012, that report said. That contribution from attorney David Boies - who previously headlined a fundraiser for Vance - was a fraction of the $116,000 that Boies, his son and his law partner have delivered to the Democrat during his political career.
But less than six months after the D.A.'s office dropped the case, Kasowitz made an even larger donation to Vance's campaign, and helped raise more from others-eventually, a total of more than $50,000.
"Contributions are, unfortunately, a part of running for office", Vance said Wednesday.
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