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Harvey Weinstein sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape and sexual assault

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Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison Wednesday in a New York courtroom, the culmination of a case that fueled the global #MeToo movement that encouraged women to speak out against sexual abuse.

“I really feel remorse for this situation,” the former Hollywood producer said, his voice barely audible, as he addressed the court before the sentence was handed down. “I feel it deeply in my heart. I will spend my time really caring and really trying to be a better person.”
“I’m not going to say that these aren’t great people,” he also said of his accusers. “I’ve had wonderful times with these people.”
Weinstein wore a blank face as he was taken out of the courtroom. His accusers cried together in the front row.
Weinstein, 67, arrived to his sentencing hearing in a wheelchair and handcuffs. He faced between five and 29 years for last month’s convictions on first-degree criminal sexual act and third-degree rape.
Judge James Burke sentenced Weinstein to 20 years in prison for first-degree criminal sex act and 3 years in prison for third-degree rape.
The sentences will run consecutively and both come with 5 years of supervision after release.
The charges were based on testimony by Miriam Haley and Jessica Mann, who both spoke at Wednesday’s sentencing.
“If Harvey Weinstein had not been convicted by this jury, it would have happened again and again and again,” Haley told the court. “I’m relieved he will now know he’s not above the law. I’m relieved there are women out there who are safer because he’s not out there.”

Weinstein’s statement came as a surprise

Weinstein’s comments in court Wednesday were unexpected. In general, defendants planning to appeal a guilty verdict or who face other charges do not speak at sentencing because what they say can be used against them, according to Michelle Simpson Tuegel, an attorney who has worked in criminal defense.
Weinstein also said he believed the relationships with women who spoke out against him were consensual, specifically mentioning Mann. “I really, really was under that impression that I had that kind of relationship, five years with Jessica,” he said.
Haley, Mann and the four other women who testified against Weinstein at his trial — Mann, actress Annabella Sciorra and three “prior bad acts” witnesses — arrived to court with prosecutors and sat in the front row. Actress Rosie Perez, who testified in support of Sciorra’s claims, walked in with them and sat in the second row.
Weinstein was acquitted of two more serious charges of predatory sexual assault, which could have come with a life sentence.
Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi-Orbon on Wednesday asked Burke to sentence Weinstein to the maximum or near the maximum sentence, with the sentences served concurrently.
Defense attorneys have asked that he get the minimum possible sentence: five years. Anything more than that is “basically the death penalty,” defense attorney Arthur Aidala said, citing Weinstein’s health and age. He called him a “broken down man.”
Weinstein has been in state custody since the verdict and has had several health issues. He had a heart procedure last week during which doctors inserted a stent, and on Sunday he fell while at Rikers Island jail, his publicist Juda Engelmayer told CNN.

Victims describe how Weinstein changed their lives

In court before the sentence was handed down, Haley broke down crying Wednesday during her victim impact statement as she described being assaulted by Weinstein.
“I believe that when he attacked me that evening with physical force, with no regard for my cries and protests, it scarred me deeply — mentally and emotionally,” Haley said.
Haley said the past two years have been excruciating, filled with paranoia and fear of retaliation daily. And while testifying against Weinstein was difficult, it did help Haley process what happened to her, she said.
Haley felt Weinstein showed a lack of remorse or acknowledgment for his crimes, she said, and she asked the judge to consider a sentence “long enough for Harvey Weinstein to acknowledge what he has done.”
Mann minutes later asked Burke to impose the maximum sentence for rape in the third degree, with sentences served concurrently.
Mann wants the “gift” of knowing exactly where Weinstein is at all times, she said, adding she hopes he’ll be rehabilitated in prison.
“Twelve people found Harvey unanimously guilty of raping me. That is not an easy task,” she said.
Mann also referenced drug charges that she said carry longer sentence recommendations than third-degree rape.
“How am I not worth more than cocaine?” she said.
Weinstein also faces felony charges of forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, sexual penetration by use of force and sexual battery by restraint in Los Angeles. Prosecutors say he raped one woman and sexually assaulted another in separate incidents over a two-day period in February 2013.
Weinstein has not yet turned himself in or been arraigned on the California charges.
He has denied all allegations of “nonconsensual sexual activity” related to the New York case and other claims made against him.

Defense asks for 5 years in prison

Illuzzi-Orbon on Wednesday referenced the submitted sentencing memo that she said detailed additional accounts of victims of Weinstein’s abuse and show his lack of human empathy, selfishness, and a life rooted in criminality. One assistant told prosecutors Weinstein threatened to kill her and her entire family, Illuzzi-Orbon said.
The prosecutor also described the glamorous lifestyle Weinstein lived as a giant of the movie industry.
“He got drunk on the power,” Illuzzi-Orbon said. “Young struggling dreamers were not real people to him.”
Illuzzi-Orbon read a profile of Weinstein given to hotel employees in which they were cautioned, “Do not go near the car. Do not speak at him. Do not look at him. Stay away.”
Illuzzi-Orbon thanked the six women who testified against Weinstein and thanked them for attending the sentencing hearing. She also thanked the news media for its coverage. And she thanked Burke, noting that the trial lasted a week longer than anticipated.
Illuzzi-Orbon also noted Weinstein’s significant legal representation, saying she thought his defense team made every reasonable argument it should have and could have made on his behalf.
The Manhattan District Attorney’s office argued in an 11-page court filing last week that Weinstein should receive a sentence that “reflects the seriousness of defendant’s offenses.” He led a “lifetime of abuse towards others, sexual and otherwise,” prosecutors argued, and they highlighted three dozen uncharged incidents and accusations.
“Starting in the 1970s, he has trapped women into his exclusive control and assaulted or attempted to assault them,” Illuzzi-Orbon wrote in a letter.
However, Weinstein’s defense attorneys requested a five-year prison sentence, the minimum for his criminal sexual act conviction, according to a sentencing letter provided by his spokesman.
His attorneys wrote that Weinstein’s personal charitable giving, advanced age, medical issues and lack of a criminal history should lead to a lower sentence. They wrote that his life “has been destroyed” since the publication of an article in The New Yorker in October 2017 that alleged systemic abuse of women in the entertainment industry.
“His wife divorced him, he was fired from The Weinstein Company, and in short, he lost everything,” the attorneys wrote.
The attorneys also cited the “collateral consequences” he continues to face.
“Mr. Weinstein cannot walk outside without being heckled, he has lost his means to earn a living, simply put, his fall from grace has been historic, perhaps unmatched in the age of social media,” according to the letter signed by attorneys Damon Cheronis, Donna Rotunno and Aidala.
SOURCE: CNN
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Celine Dion diagnosed with ‘Stiff Person Syndrome,’ a rare neurological disease

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Celine Dion is revealing more health news that will affect the dates of her world tour. (more…)

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Cardi B says anxiety is delaying her album

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On Tuesday (Dec. 6), Cardi B took to her social media to update her fans regarding her sophomore album, detailing the state of her mental health. (more…)

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People’s Choice Awards 2022: See the full list of winners

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The 2022 People’s Choice Awards ceremony went off with a bang and fans have made their voices heard by voting for their favorites in movies, TV, music and more. (more…)

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Hangout Music Festival Announces 2023 Lineup for the Ultimate Beach Vacation

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Hangout Music Festival has announced the soundtrack to your quintessential beach vacation on the majestic white sand beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama, May 19-21. Hangout is the ultimate kickoff to summer, a weekend defined by dancing in the sand with your best friends while listening to your favorite pop, dance, and rock artists at one of North America’s most beautiful beaches.

The legendary Red Hot Chili Peppers will set the tone for those looking to get after it on the beach. Pop-punk is alive and well at Hangout with Paramore leading the way supported by Mayday Parade and The Maine, and the various sub-genres of pop-rock, indie-rock and americana are well-represented with The Backseat Lovers, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, Noah Kahan, COIN and Alabama’s own The Vegabonds.

The present and future of pop and singer-songwriting will be waiting for you too. Prepare to get lost in the hypnotic R&B of SZA who is about to drop her long-awaited new album SOS, dance your heart out at Calvin Harris and Lil Nas X, swoon over brotherly indie trio AJR and the iconic Tove Lo, and find out what all the hype is about at Ashe, Stephen Sanchez, Jessie Murph, and Sabrina Carpenter.

Hip-hop comes proper to Hangout this year, with the festival rolling out the red carpet for A$AP Mob’s FERG, Australian rapper The Kid LAROI, the fiercely independent Russ, Baton Rouge’s Kevin Gates, and reigning queen of Memphis rap, GloRilla. Grammy-winning R&B bassist Thundercat rounds out the bill with his larger than life live spectacle.

Nothing tops a dance music throwdown with all of your best friends on the beach, and this year’s Hangout lineup is fully loaded. Leading the charge is Aussie export Flume and genre-bending producer Skrillex. Electronic anthems continue with larger than life dance icons REZZ and Alison Wonderland, while chiller strains can be found at Gryffin, Said The Sky, Big Wild and Two Feet. House heads can unite at John Summit, Dr. Fresch, Aluna and HoneyLuv.

With a nod to its southern roots, Hangout sprinkles in some country vibes too with Priscilla Block, MIKE., and Kidd G.

The Hangout experience has been carefully crafted over the past decade for you to hang loose. It’s the most anti-winter, adulting-be-damned, carefree getaway possible.

Those in the know will tell you that Hangout’s SUPER VIP offering is unlike any other festival. Exclusive offerings include stage side swimming pool, hot tubs, golf cart concierge between designated stages, gourmet meals prepared by award-winning chefs in an air-conditioned dining room and a premium open bar.

New for 2023, Hangout Beach Vacations make traveling to Alabama even easier with exclusive Beach Vacation Packages designed to make your festival experience as convenient as it is unforgettable. Grab your lodging and festival tickets together with the option to choose from a range of local hotels and condos, or build a custom experience with our travel team. You can even pick the Hangout House with the luxury of a condo with all the amenities of a hotel plus direct festival access, ocean views, self-service laundry and, of course, all the feels of watching a sunset performance from your balcony.

Hangout is more than just a festival, it’s the freedom of leaving it all behind you, kicking back with your best friends and listening to amazing music on the beach.

For Festival Tickets, Vacation Packages and More Visit:
https://www.hangoutmusicfest.com

2023 Lineup
Red Hot Chili Peppers
SZA
Calvin Harris
Paramore
Lil Nas X
Flume
Skrillex
The Kid LAROI
AJR
Alison Wonderland
The Backseat Lovers
FERG
Gryffin
John Summit
Kevin Gates
Noah Kahan
Rainbow Kitten Surprise
REZZ
Russ
Sabrina Carpenter
Ashe
Big Wild
COIN
GloRilla
Said The Sky
Thundercat
Tove Lo
Yung Gravy
Dr. Fresch
Jessie Murph
Kidd G
The Maine
Mariah The Scientist
Mayday Parade
Mike.
Priscilla Block
Stephen Sanchez
Two Feet
The 502s
A Hundred Drums
Aluna
Beach Weather
Charlotte Sands
Elohim
Flipturn
Gashi
HoneyLuv
Jordana
Moore Kismet
Night Tales
Nostalgix
Ranger Trucco
Sam Fischer
sfam
The Vegabonds
Wenzday

Ticket Tier Details

GA

  • Admission to Hangout 2023 + all GA areas, amenities and activities
  • Re-entry all weekend long
  • Beach and swimming access to designated beach clubs
  • Tons of food & beverage vendors, beach activities and sponsored areas

GA PLUS

  • Tickets include all the perks of GA with the below amenities added
  • Access to GA PLUS Grove with private air-conditioned restrooms, premium food offerings, and shaded areas to relax
  • Priority GA PLUS entrances at all festival gates

VIP

  • Tickets include all the perks of GA with the below amenities added
  • Up-front viewing at all main stages with complimentary drinks
  • Access to VIP Grove with complimentary premium cocktails, beer, wine & daily buffet
  • Access to stage side pools at Hangout Main Stage
  • Private air-conditioned restrooms
  • Priority VIP entrances

SUPER VIP

  • Tickets include all the perks of GA with the below amenities added
  • Up-front viewing at all main stages with complimentary drinks
  • Access to VIP Grove with complimentary premium cocktails, beer, wine & daily buffet
  • Access to SUPER VIP Deck with elevated view of Hangout Main Stage, shaded seating, premium cocktails & hot tubs
  • Access to stage side pools at Hangout Main Stage
  • Golf cart shuttles between designated stages
  • Complimentary gourmet meals prepared by award-winning chefs in the air-conditioned SUPER VIP Dining room
  • Private air-conditioned restrooms
  • Priority VIP entrances

About Hangout Music Festival
To put it simply, Hangout Music Festival is a beach vacation for music fans. Located in Gulf Shores, Alabama, the award-winning festival is the ultimate kickoff to summer and features the top artists of the moment in a picturesque setting that includes seaside beach clubs, a full-size roller rink, stage side swimming pools, hammocks by the water, delicious food, luxury VIP options, and more. The festival is just a short drive from the Pensacola, FL and Mobile, AL airports and offers an array of lodging packages including beachfront suites overlooking the festival, villas, and hotel options. Hangout has been named Pollstar’s “Music Festival of the Year” and is continuously recognized as one of the best festivals in the US while adding over $40 million into the local economy each year.

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Indonesia passes criminal code banning sex outside marriage

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Indonesian lawmakers unanimously passed a sweeping new criminal code on Tuesday that criminalizes sex outside marriage, as part of a tranche of changes that critics say threaten human rights and freedoms in the Southeast Asian country. (more…)

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Tory Lanez released from house arrest amid Megan Thee Stallion trial

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Tory Lanez has been released from house arrest at a judge’s discretion in order to prepare for a trial over an allegation that he shot Megan Thee Stallion in 2020. (more…)

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