Harvey Weinstein is asking a federal judge in New York to stop proceedings in a civil suit filed by Alexandra Canosa. Weinstein’s attorney, Imran Ansari, told the courts that it’s impossible for Weinstein to sit through a deposition because of his poor health.
“Mr. Weinstein’s health has had a dramatic decline this week, as heavily reported in the media,” Ansari wrote in the motion. “These health concerns make it practically impossible to conduct his deposition and impedes his fundamental right to participate in his defense.”
Weinstein has a slew of health problems – diabetes, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, chronic leg pain, arthritis, anemia, spinal stenosis, and more. Earlier this week, Weinstein was in isolation for high fever but tested negative for COVID-19.
Ansari argues that Canosa’s claims are related to the criminal charges he is facing, and there is a severe risk of incrimination.
“In the absence of a stay, Mr. Weinstein’s constitutional rights to defend himself against the criminal allegations are unreasonably and unfairly burdened. Mr. Weinstein would be forced to make ‘the difficult choice between being prejudiced in civil litigation, ‘if he asserts his Fifth Amendment privilege,’ or from being prejudiced in the criminal litigation if he waives that privilege in the civil litigation.”
Weinstein is facing 11 felony charges in Los Angeles, including rape and sexual battery.