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WSJ: Harvey Weinstein Reaches $44 Million Deal Over Sexual Misconduct


Former film mogul Harvey Weinstein may have settled the myriad civil suits against him. It's a $44 million tentative deal. Among the parties involved, victims of Weinstein, as well as board members and employees of his former studio and the New York attorney general's office. Corinne Ramey is one of the reporters who broke the story for The Wall Street Journal. And she joins me now.

Thanks for being here.

CORINNE RAMEY: Sure. Good morning.

MARTIN: What more can you tell us about the details of the settlement?

RAMEY: Well, this is something that - there's a lot of parties involved here. I'll add there's also insurance companies for Mr. Weinstein's studio, for Miramax, which was also involved, and that the - that $44 million is not coming from Harvey himself. It's actually coming from insurance policies.

MARTIN: So explain that. What kind of insurance policies insure against sexual predation?

RAMEY: Well, it's more that the insurance policies are covering sort of legal liability. And these are - to be clear, these are not criminal lawsuits. These are civil lawsuits that were filed by quite a few women. And also, the New York attorney general's office filed a lawsuit with civil rights about - alleging civil rights violations. And so the insurance policies covered the - these kind of lawsuits.

MARTIN: So let's just get into a little bit more detail on who...

RAMEY: Sure.

MARTIN: ...Will benefit from the deal. I mean, obviously, the alleged victims, former employees - right? - board members from The Weinstein Company and employees of his former studio - why are they eligible for this?

RAMEY: So in that New York attorney general's office lawsuit, this was not just sort of sexual abuse claims but also these claims of a hostile work environment. They were - the office was alleging that Mr. Weinstein created this sort of atmosphere of - if people didn't do certain things or if they didn't help with certain cover-ups, then they couldn't advance, or they would be punished. And so employees who worked for The Weinstein Company are also eligible for some of these funds that are allocated for victims.

MARTIN: This has nothing to do, as you noted, with the criminal cases against him, right?

RAMEY: Exactly, yeah.

MARTIN: Can you tell us where those stand right now?

RAMEY: Sure. So there's actually only one criminal case that - he's been indicted in Manhattan by the Manhattan district attorney's office. And he has a trial scheduled for September.

MARTIN: One case - is that just the result of one victim's allegation?

RAMEY: So that case, at this point, is two victims' allegations. Although, there have been - there have also been discussions and motions in court about allowing other women to testify who aren't part of the criminal charge but sort of help prosecutors prove what they say is a sort of pattern of behavior.

MARTIN: So although there is news today of this settlement - $44 million that Weinstein will end up paying - or rather his insurance companies will end up paying it - you remind us that Harvey Weinstein could still be anticipating a long prison sentence. We'll just have to wait and see come that trial.

RAMEY: Yeah, Absolutely.

MARTIN: OK. Corinne Ramey of The Wall Street Journal, talking to us on Skype - we appreciate you sharing your reporting on this. Thank you so much.

RAMEY: Sure. Thank you.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.