Harvey Weinstein hired several private security agencies to investigate his accusers and try to prevent allegations that he had sexually assaulted women from going public, The New Yorker reported Monday.
Numerous women have alleged that Weinstein sexually harassed or assaulted them in reports published in The New York Times and The New Yorker last month.
Weinstein spokesperson Sallie Hofmeister told The New Yorker that “it is a fiction to suggest that any individuals were targeted or suppressed at any time.”
But actress Rose McGowan, who says that Weinstein raped her, told The New Yorker that a woman named Diana Filip, claiming to be a women’s rights activist, began reaching out to her in May.
However, Filip was a former Israeli Defense Forces officer working for the intelligence firm Black Cube. Weinstein had hired the firm to find information to block the publication of a Times story documenting the allegations.
Filip had also contacted New Yorker writer Ronan Farrow and Times reporter Jodi Kantor, whose stories last month documented the allegations against Weinstein.
Weinstein also reportedly retained the security firm Kroll to suppress the allegations, including tracking down photos of Weinstein and McGowan speaking in public.
And the mogul also hired PSOPS, a firm out of Los Angeles that created profiles on McGowan and actress Rosanna Arquette, who accused Weinstein of sexual harassment last month.
The New Yorker reported that Weinstein also targeted New York magazine reporter Ben Wallace, who was working on a similar report about the allegations.
The article was ultimately set aside for journalistic reasons, but Wallace told The New Yorker that "there was much more static and distraction than I’ve encountered on any other story.”
Weinstein was fired as chairman of The Weinstein Co. last month after the first allegations of sexual harassment and assault were made against him. His wife filed for divorce shortly afterward and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences also expelled him from the organization.