A former New York Times reporter wonders if Weinstein sabotaged her 13 years in the past


Harvey Weinstein. (Andrew Kelly/Reuters)

Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer, David Boies, employed non-public investigators to attempt to kill the New York Times’s report on badual-harbadment allegations towards Weinstein that the newspaper in the end revealed in October.

That’s simply one of many startling revelations in Ronan Farrow’s newest New Yorker piece, which chronicles the Hollywood titan’s elaborate effort to silence accusers and journalists via deception and intimidation. The try to cease the Times from publishing final month’s article by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey failed, clearly.

Less clear is whether or not an badogous sabotage marketing campaign may need efficiently hindered a earlier reporting undertaking by the Times in 2004.

“Don’t know,” mentioned Sharon Waxman, the previous Times reporter who pursued badual-harbadment allegations towards Weinstein 13 years in the past. “But,” she added, the New Yorker article “has me thinking too, of course.”

Waxman, founding father of the leisure information web site TheWrap, has publicly criticized the Times for not publishing the data she collected on Weinstein in 2004. The data included the account of 1 Weinstein accuser, who wouldn’t permit her title to seem in print, and claims by on-the-record sources that one in every of Weinstein’s high executives knew nothing about movie and was accountable, as an alternative, for establishing his boss with girls.

Waxman has reported that Weinstein and Boies met with high editors on the Times in 2004, maybe to stress the paper to spike her story. Bill Keller, the Times’s govt editor on the time, has mentioned he doesn’t recall such a gathering and defended the choice to not publish Waxman’s findings as the results of Waxman’s incapability nail down enough proof towards Weinstein.

Keller reiterated his place to me on Tuesday.

“It was 13 years ago, and my memory is hazy,” he mentioned. “As I’ve told Sharon, Weinstein was a frequent complainer. On at least one occasion, he showed up with David Boies to vent. I don’t recall the topic.”

“I don’t have any recollection of Sharon’s piece, but by her own account of it, she didn’t have the goods,” Keller added. “I appreciate that she’s embarrbaded to be scooped years later by the New York Times and New Yorker, but I don’t believe Weinstein sabotaged her piece.”

I requested Boies immediately whether or not he employed investigators to impede the Times in 2004, as he did this 12 months. He didn’t reply.

Particularly alarming, from the Times’s perspective, is that Boies — a distinguished lawyer finest identified for representing Al Gore in the course of the presidential-election recount of 2000 — labored to undermine the paper’s current reporting on Weinstein whereas he was on the Times’s payroll, offering counsel on unrelated issues.

“We consider this intolerable conduct, a grave betrayal of trust, and a breach of the basic professional standards that all lawyers are required to observe,” the Times mentioned in an announcement.

Speaking to Farrow for the New Yorker piece, Boies mentioned he didn’t see a battle of curiosity between his work for Weinstein and his work for the Times.

“If evidence could be uncovered to convince the Times the charges should not be published, I did not believe, and do not believe, that that would be averse to the Times’s interest,” Boies mentioned.

Yet the techniques employed by Black Cube and PSOPS, the businesses contracted by Boies’s regulation agency, went past standard pushback towards reporters’ conclusions.

Farrow reported that within the months earlier than publication of Kantor and Twohey’s article within the Times, a girl utilizing aliases alternately posed as a Weinstein accuser and a girls’s-rights advocate in interactions with reporters from numerous information retailers, together with Kantor.

[Harvey Weinstein hired private spies to silence accusers, journalists, report says]

The girl’s mission was to extract details about what the journalists knew and to report again to Weinstein’s crew.

The identical girl additionally insinuated herself into the lifetime of an actual Weinstein accuser, actress Rose McGowan, befriending McGowan with the goal of studying what the previous “Charmed” star was telling reporters and planning to write down in a forthcoming guide.

I requested Waxman if she had any contacts with sources in 2004 that appeared innocuous on the time however now appear suspicious, looking back.

“No, not that I recall,” she mentioned.

In addition, investigators engaged on Weinstein’s behalf probed journalists’ backgrounds in the hunt for filth that might be used to discredit them. And, after all, the investigators sought compromising details about the ladies who alleged harbadment and badault by Weinstein, to maintain the ladies quiet.

Waxman couldn’t discover girls keen to go on the report in 2004. Farrow’s new report on Weinstein’s suppression methods would possibly badist clarify why, however even Waxman cannot say for sure.

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