Weinstein lawyers ask judge to recuse over alleged bias
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Lawyers for Harvey Weinstein, the disgraced former Hollywood producer charged with sex crimes in two states, asked a New York judge to recuse himself from Weinstein's trial after the judge ordered him not to use his cell phone in the courtroom.

Variety reported Wednesday that Weinstein's attorneys called the comments directed at their client by Justice James Burke “prejudicial and inflammatory" and also took issue with Burke's decision to not allow the case to be put on hold temporarily a day earlier.

“It has become clear to Mr. Weinstein that the Court has already violated its own mandate to the potential jurors by deciding that Mr. Weinstein is guilty before it has heard any of the trial evidence,” read a court filing obtained by Variety.


Burke apparently questioned Weinstein after he was caught texting in the courtroom during a previous court proceeding, and asked the defendant if he wished to be jailed for life.

“Is this really the way you want to end up in jail for the rest of your life, by texting in violation of an order?” Burke reportedly asked.

Weinstein, who appeared in court this week using a walker, faces accusations from dozens of women in the film industry of inappropriate and nonconsensual sexual behavior, including new rape charges that were made public in Los Angeles this week.

“We believe the evidence will show that the defendant used his power and influence to gain access to his victims and then commit violent crimes against them,” Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said in a statement Monday.

Weinstein has yet to comment on the newest charges against him, but has maintained that all his sexual encounters with women over the years were consensual.