Mel Gibson can testify at Harvey Weinstein trial, judge says

A judge decided on Friday that Mel Gibson can testify about what he learned from one of Harvey Weinstein’s accusers in the disgraced movie mogul’s rape and sexual assault trial.

The 66-year-old actor and director was one of numerous witnesses whose identities were revealed in Los Angeles Superior Court, and by far the most well-known. The court and counsel had taken a pause from jury selection to consider motions about admissible evidence and witnesses. The trial’s witness list is kept under wraps.

Judge Lisa B. Lench ordered that Gibson may testify in support of his masseuse and close friend, who will be identified at trial as Jane Doe #3. Weinstein is charged with sexual violence by restraint against the lady, one of eleven charges of rape and sexual assault against the 70-year-old.

After receiving a massage from the lady in May 2010 at a hotel in Beverly Hills, California, according to prosecutors, Weinstein followed her into the bathroom and masturbated. Weinstein has pled not guilty and denied engaging in sexual conduct without consent.

Weinstein’s attorneys opposed Gibson’s testimony, arguing that what Gibson learned from the lady during a massage does not constitute a “new complaint” by the woman under the legislation under which Gibson would take the stand. Under California law, a “fresh complaint” permits the submission of evidence of sexual assault or similar offense if the victim reported it freely and reasonably quickly after it occurred.