Asia Argento is strongly denying the New York Times report that she paid off her sexual assault accuser, former child star Jimmy Bennett,
“I strongly deny and oppose the contents of the New York Times article dated 20 August 2018, a circulated also in national and international news,” Asia said in a statement (acquired by journalist Yashar Ali.)
“I am deeply shocked and hurt by having read news that is absolutely false. I have never had any sexual relationship with Bennett…I was linked to him during several years by friendship only, which ended when, subsequent to my exposure in the Weinstein case, Bennett – who was then undergoing severe economic problems and who had previously undertaken legal actions against his own family requesting millions in damages – unexpectedly made an exorbitant request of money from me. Bennett knew my boyfriend, Anthony Bourdain, was a man of great perceived wealth and had his own reputation as a beloved public figure to protect.”
“Anthony insisted the matter be handled privately and this was also what Bennett wanted. Anthony was afraid of the possible negative publicity that such person, who he considered dangerous, could have brought upon us. We decided to deal compassionately with Bennett‘s demand for help and give it to him. Anthony personally undertook to help Bennett economically, upon the condition that we would non longer suffer any further intrusions in our life,” she continued.
Asia added, “This is, therefore, the umpteenth development of a sequence of events that brings me great sadness and that constitutes a long standing persecution. I have therefore no other choice but to oppose such false allegations and will assume in the short term all necessary initiatives for my protection before all competent venues.”
The original report claimed that after Asia made the allegations against Weinsstein, she paid a $380,000 financial agreement that she made with Jimmy, who claimed that Asia sexually assaulted him two months after his 17th birthday years ago in a California hotel room.
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