Rose McGowan says Weinstein tried to discredit her

NEW YORK • An undercover agent was sent to befriend her and then steal a copy of the manuscript for her memoir Brave.

That account by actress Rose McGowan is included in a lawsuit filed by her on Wednesday against Harvey Weinstein and lawyers David Boies and Lisa Bloom.

She is accusing them of directing a campaign to discredit her and prevent her from going public with her rape accusation against former movie mogul Weinstein.

The lawsuit said he tapped professionals whose goal was to "ensure that McGowan's story never saw the light of day, and - if it did - that no one would believe her".

The lawsuit names, as defendants, the lawyers' firms and Black Cube, an Israeli private intelligence firm that used undercover agents to approach women who had accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct.

McGowan, 46, reached a US$100,000 (S$136,000) settlement with Weinstein, 67, after accusing him of raping her at the Sundance Film Festival in 1997.

Since 2017, when The New York Times and The New Yorker published their first articles about his alleged sexual misbehaviour, she has been vocal in her support of other women who have stepped forward to tell their stories.

Weinstein has been charged with sexually assaulting two women.

In a statement on Wednesday, Ms Phyllis Kupferstein, a lawyer for Weinstein, said "McGowan will be shown to be what she is: a publicity-seeker looking for money".

She added that the actress asked for US$6 million.

"From the moment she sought a multi million-dollar payout in return for not making these baseless allegations, which we rejected, we knew that she was waiting for an opportune time to begin this," Ms Kupferstein's statement said.

Bloom and Boies have said in the past that they made mistakes in agreeing to work for Weinstein.

A spokesman for Boies' firm said "progress of the #MeToo movement is essential" but that McGowan's lawsuit "inappropriately includes our firm and we have no choice but to defend ourselves against allegations that are simply untrue".

A lawyer for Bloom said: "There is simply no credible factual or legal basis for her claims against my client."

NYTIMES

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 25, 2019, with the headline 'Rose McGowan says Weinstein tried to discredit her'. Print Edition | Subscribe