The Latest: Actor says he feared speaking out about assault
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on a legal settlement between actress Asia Argento and an actor who says she sexually assaulted him when he was 17 (all times local):
A young actor who alleged in legal documents that actress Asia Argento sexually assaulted him when he was 17 says his trauma resurfaced when Argento came out as a victim of sexual assault herself.
The statement released Wednesday through an attorney by Jimmy Bennett, now 22, is his first public comment since a Sunday New York Times story saying Argento reached a legal settlement with him last year over an alleged sexual assault in a California hotel room.
Bennett says he initially chose to deal with the situation privately and until now has been “ashamed and afraid” to speak publicly.
His comments come a day after Argento denied having a sexual relationship with him.
The 42-year-old Argento has been a key figure in the #MeToo movement since alleging last year that Harvey Weinstein raped her when she was 21.
Italian actress and filmmaker Asia Argento has backed out of curating a Dutch music festival after a young actor accused her of sexual assault.
Organizers of the “Le Guess Who?” festival said in a statement Wednesday that “due to the volatile nature of the accusations surrounding Ms. Argento, she has chosen to withdraw from her curatorship of this year’s edition, while these issues remain open.”
Argento, a prominent #MeToo activist, was one of the curators of the festival which takes place in the city of Utrecht in November.
Actor Jimmy Bennett claimed Argento, then 37, sexually assaulted him when he was 17 in 2013. Argento denied ever having a sexual relationship with Bennett, whom she agreed to pay $380,000 in a settlement.