NEW YORK (AP) — A Delaware bankruptcy judge says six women who have accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct can proceed with their class action lawsuit against the television and film company he co-founded.

The judge's ruling Tuesday granted a motion to lift an automatic stay on pending litigation against the Weinstein Co., which was forced into bankruptcy after the sex scandal exploded in October.

The class-action complaint accuses the company of operating like an organized crime group to conceal widespread sexual harassment and assaults.

Earlier Tuesday, Weinstein pleaded not guilty to rape and criminal sex act charges in New York City after a grand jury charged him with raping a woman in a hotel room and forcing another to perform oral sex in his office.

Weinstein has denied all allegations of nonconsensual sex.