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Harvey Weinstein case: Jury picked for New York rape trial

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Media caption“Why I broke my silence over Weinstein”

Lawyers have chosen the 12 jurors who will sit in the trial of former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.

About 700 candidates – including model Gigi Hadid – were screened over the course of two weeks before a group of seven men and five women were picked.

Mr Weinstein faces five charges, including rape and sexual assault. The trial will begin on Wednesday in New York.

The 67-year-old has denied all charges, saying the encounters were consensual.

He could face life in prison if convicted.

Once one of Hollywood’s most decorated and lauded producers, more than 80 women have accused Mr Weinstein of sexual misconduct – allegations which helped drive the #MeToo movement.

However, few of the complaints have led to criminal charges and in the New York case he faces charges related to allegations made by two women.

Judge James Burke told potential jurors on Thursday that the trial was “not a referendum on the #MeToo movement”, and that they were expected to decide Mr Weinstein’s fate “on the evidence”.

The trial is expected toconclude in early March.

Mr Weinstein was also charged with an additional count of rape and one of sexual assault in Los Angeles earlier this month, which he also denies.

Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey has said she expects Mr Weinstein to appear in court in California in that case, saying he could be extradited or could come voluntarily after the conclusion of the New York trial.

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Media captionHired by Weinstein to extract information on celebrities

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