Credible Rape Accusation against #Metoo leader Asia Argento
Asia Argento, one of the lead figures in the #MeToo movement has been ousted as having reportedly had sexual relations with a former co-star who was underage.
The New York Times reported last Sunday that they obtained lawyers' documents in encrypted emails from an unidentified party that showed Argento agreed to make payments to actor Jimmy Bennett after he accused her of sexually assaulting him in 2013.
According to the publication, Bennett said the assault took place when he was 17 and she was 37 at a hotel in California, where the age of consent is 18, thus making it statutory rape. Bennett played Argento's son in the 2004 movie "The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things."
In the months after being allegedly raped by Harvey Weinstein, Argento agreed to a settlement of $380,000 for her accuser. She claims that this move was recommended by her then-boyfriend, the late Anthony Bourdain. The payment falls far short of the requested $3.5 million in damages for the intentional infliction of emotional distress, lost wages, assault, and battery.
Bennett's statement says: "Many brave women and men have spoken out about their own experiences during the #metoo movement, and I appreciate the bravery that it took for each and every one of them to take such a stand. I did not initially speak out about my story because I chose to handle it in private with the person who wronged me. My trauma resurfaced as she came out as a victim herself. I have not made a public statement in the past days and hours because I was ashamed and afraid to be part of the public narrative. I was underage when the event took place, and I tried to seek justice in a way that made sense to me at the time because I was not ready to deal with the ramifications of my story becoming public. At the time I believed there was still a stigma to being in the situation as a male in our society. I didn't think that people would understand the event that took place from the eyes of a teenage boy. I have had to overcome many adversities in my life, and this is another that I will deal with, in time. I would like to move past this event in my life, and today I choose to move forward, no longer in silence."
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