With one lawyer bolting amid public backlash and another saying he and his client just couldn’t get along, Harvey Weinstein is recasting his defence team yet again, this time a mere 60 days before he’s due to stand trial in New York on sexual assault charges.
Lawyer Jose Baez is going to court Thursday to get a judge’s permission to leave the case in the latest defection from what was once seen as a modern version of OJ Simpson’s “dream team” of attorneys.
Baez, known for representing high-profile clients such as Casey Anthony, told Judge James Burke in a letter last month that Weinstein has tarnished their relationship by communicating only through other lawyers and by failing to abide by a fee agreement.
“Mr Weinstein has engaged in behaviour that makes this representation unreasonably difficult to carry out effectively and has insisted upon taking actions with which I have fundamental disagreements,” Baez wrote.
As Baez leaves, Weinstein is adding two new lawyers who’ve promised Burke that they won’t seek to postpone the trial from its scheduled
The swap comes after another Weinstein lawyer, Harvard law professor Ronald Sullivan, left in May amid backlash about his involvement.
Sullivan’s involvement in the case drew protests from some students and faculty on the Cambridge, Massachusetts, campus.
Weinstein, 67, is charged with raping a woman in 2013 and performing a forcible sex act on a different woman in 2006. He denies the allegations.