Harvey Weinstein hires Rose McGowan’s former lawyers as part of his new high-powered defense team as the actress blasts the attorneys over a ‘major conflict of interest’
- Harvey Weinstein has parted ways with his attorney Ben Brafman
- He hired a team of high-profile attorneys Jose Baez, Ron Sullivan and Pam Mackeyand to represent him in his sexual assault case
- Baez and Sullivan were hired by Rose McGowan last year in her drug possession case
- McGowan claimed the drugs were planted by someone working for Weinstein and is one of his most vocal accusers
- The actress says she ‘knew there was shadiness going on behind the scenes’ in her drug case and called the new hire a ‘major conflict of interest’
- Baez said he and Sullivan consulted with an ethics counsel and was cleared to represent Weinstein
- He previously represented Casey Anthony in the high-profile 2011 case and the pair worked together in Aaron Hernandez’s 2017 acquittal
Kayla Brantley For Dailymail.com
Harvey Weinstein has hired a new defense team in his sexual assault case, which includes two former attorneys of one of his most vocal accusers, Rose McGowan.
The disgraced Hollywood mogul recently nixed his high-powered attorney Ben Brafman over differences in legal strategy, and hired Jose Baez, Ron Sullivan and Pam Mackeyand to represent him against accusations of rape and sexual assault.
McGowan hired Baez and Sullivan last year to act as co-counsel after she was charged with drug possession when cocaine was found in a wallet she left behind at an airport.
The actress claimed in court documents that the two bags of cocaine had been planted in her wallet by someone working for Weinstein.
McGowan now claims the new hires to Weinstein’s team is a ‘major conflict of interest’ and says she ‘knew there was shadiness going on behind the scenes’ with her lawyers.
Harvey Weinstein parted ways with his attorney and hired two lawyers who represented actress actress Rose McGowan last year in her drug possession case
Jose Baez (pictured) has been hired by Weinstein along with Ron Sullivan and Pam Mackeyand. McGowan is calling the hire a ‘major conflict of interest’
Speaking to the Daily Beast after news of Baez’s hire, McGowan said: ‘This is why my case didn’t go to trial – my instinct was my lawyers had been bought off.’
‘I thought Harvey would get to them behind the scenes and I wouldn’t have fair representation,’ she added.
McGowan appeared in Virginia court earlier this month to plead no contest and was ordered to pay a $2,500 fine.
‘I asked Jose Baez directly if he would ever work with Harvey and I told him it was my fear that he would be bought off while representing me,’ McGowan said. ‘He responded by saying, ”I don’t like to lose.”’
Baez and Sullivan often work together on cases and in 2017 notably won the acquittal for Aaron Hernandez, the late New England Patriot playing accused of a double homicide
The attorneys told The Daily Beast in a statement: ‘We were pleased to represent our former client, Ms Rose McGowan, in a matter unrelated to Mr Weinstein’s current charges. After consultation with ethics counsel, we are certain no conflict of interest exists. We wish Ms McGowan well with all her future endeavors.’
Baez himself has also led a number of high-profile cases, including the 2011 acquittal for Casey Anthony, the mother who was charged with murdering her two-year-old daughter
Jose Baez (left) and Ronald Sullivan (right) represented former New England Patriots football player Aaron Hernandez in the 2017 acquittal case and will now make up Weinstein’s defense team
Baez previously led the team in Casey Anthony’s high-profile 2011 acquittal
‘I can confirm that I along with Harvard Law Professor Ronald S Sullivan have been retained by Harvey Weinstein,’ Baez said Wednesday in a statement to Deadline.
‘Mr Weinstein steadfastly maintains his innocence in this matter and we are looking forward to assisting Mr Weinstein in his defense,’ the Florida-based lawyer added.
The trial for Weinstein is expected to begin on May 7 on charges that he raped a lover in 2013 and forcibly performed oral sex on a production assistant in 2006.
Mackey, the only female lawyer on his team, represented Los Angeles Lakers player Kobe Bryant when he was accused of raping a 19-year-old woman in 2003.
The case was dropped after the victim stopped cooperating and Bryant has always maintain that it was consensual.
The team will also bring in attorney Duncan Levin and Weinstein’s longtime lawyer Blair Berk will be more active in their case.
Earlier this month, Weinstein told the Daily Beast that he was reaching out to new lawyers to revamp his criminal defense team, but denied he was replacing Brafman.
The Hollywood producer reportedly tried to add lawyers to his team against Brafman’s wishes.
Brafman is till technically Weinstein’s attorney until they appear in Manhattan Supreme Court Friday with his new team and Justice James Burke signs off on the arrangement.
Weinstein will officially part ways with his lawyer Benjamin Brafman Friday