Jury selection has begun in a civil case centered on rape allegations against Oscar-winning filmmaker Paul Haggis.
His lawsuit that went to trial in New York was filed by a journalist who said the Crash and Million Dollar Baby screenwriter lured her to his Manhattan apartment and raped her after the premiere. movie 2013.
Haggis considers the meeting to be consensual.
His lawyers have suggested that the Church of Scientology created false accusations of sexual deviance to discredit him.
Haggis left the church in 2009 and has since publicly denounced it.
The church said it was not involved in the charges against Haggis.
No criminal charges have been filed in relation to the journalist’s allegations.
Her lawsuit could mean a financial penalty but not prison or probation for Haggis if she wins the case.
She is looking for unspecified damages.
After the lawsuit was filed in late 2017, three other women told her attorney and the Associated Press Haggis sexually assaulted them or attempted to do so.
One said he raped her.
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In response, his lawyer said that Haggis “did not rape anyone”.
The lawsuit was only filed by the journalist making the rape allegation in 2013, but Judge Sabrina Kraus ruled last month that three other women could also present evidence as part of the plaintiff’s efforts to demonstrate Haggis’ “intention and lack of consent”.
Canadian-born Haggis wrote Million Dollar Baby and Crash, which won several consecutive Academy Awards for best picture in the mid-2000s.
He also directed and produced Crash, which earned him and Bobby Moresco the 2006 Best Original Screenplay Oscar.
The following year, Haggis was nominated in the same category for Letters From Iwo Jima.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/movies/jurors-selected-to-hear-rape-case-against-oscar-winning-director-paul-haggis-42073887.html Jury selected to hear rape case against Oscar-winning director Paul Haggis