Asia Argento denies sexual assault of 17-year-old actor

Ruben Ruiz
August 21, 2018

Italian actress Asia Argento has denied allegations that she sexually assaulted an underage male actor.

While reporting on the death of American travel host and chef Anthony Bourdain, who had been dating Argento, Severson said she began hearing stories about the Italian actor and director.

In October, Argento told the New Yorker Weinstein forced himself on her in 1997.

Bourdain, her statement says, wanted the matter to "be handled privately and this was also what Bennett wanted".

But on Sunday night, the New York Times dropped a bomb about Argento: she was accused of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old boy and agreeing to pay him $380,000 to keep quiet.

McGowan and Argento have been among the most prominent women to come forward with allegations of rape against now-disgraced film titan Harvey Weinstein, who is facing criminal charges in NY unrelated to McGowan or Argento.

Quoting documents exchanged between lawyers for Bennett and Argento, the paper details an incident alleged to have taken place in 2013 in a California hotel room when he had just turned 17 and she was 37. Bennett alleged that Argento gave him alcohol, performed oral sex on him and then had sex with him in May 2013 at a hotel.

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She said the friendship "ended when, subsequent to my exposure in the Weinstein case, Bennett. unexpectedly made an exorbitant request of money from me". She does acknowledge however that the payment was made to the actor by Anthony Bourdain, who died by suicide on June 8.

The actress has become a prominent voice in the #MeToo movement against sexual assault and harassment.

The notice of intent asked for $3.5 million in damages. "Anthony was afraid of the possible negative publicity that such person, whom he considered risky, could have brought upon us", Argento said. Argento said Bourdain "personally undertook to help Bennett economically" under the condition that he not contact Argento again.

"This is, therefore, the umpteenth development of a sequence of events that brings me great sadness and that constitutes a long-standing persecution", she said. Fellow #MeToo activist and Weinstein accuser Rose McGowan says her 'heart is broken'.

The statement does not address the photo of Argento naked in bed with Bennett that multiple people had seen and verified according to the Times.

"A leader in the #MeToo movement having something like this in her background doesn't look great for the #MeToo movement", Kim Severson, the Times reporter behind the story, said from Atlanta.

Other reports by GizPress

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