In early October, less than a week after a bombshell New York Times report exposed decades of alleged sexual assault and harassment from then-The Weinstein Company head Harvey Weinstein, his brother and business partner Bob Weinstein hit back with some strong words. “My brother Harvey is obviously a very sick man,” Bob Weinstein told TMZ at the time. “I’ve urged him to seek immediate professional help because he is in dire need of it. His remorse and apologies to the victims of his abuse are hollow. He said he would go away for help and has yet to do so.”
Bob Weinstein also responded to a rumor that perhaps he was the one who leaked portions of the story, all the better to oust his brother from TWC. “He has proven himself to be a world class liar and now rather than seeking help he is looking to blame others,” Bob Weinstein said. “His assertion is categorically untrue from A to Z. I pray he gets the help that he needs and I believe that it is him behind all of these stories to distract from his own failure to get help.”
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Now, a new report from Ronan Farrow holds that not only did Bob Weinstein know about his bother’s alleged crimes for years, he may have actively helped cover them up through secret settlements paid out to alleged victims.
Farrow’s latest in The New Yorker reveals a history of settlements and nondisclosure agreements, many of them used to reportedly silence victims in a variety of ways. As Farrow writes, “[Harvey] Weinstein used nondisclosure agreements…to evade accountability for claims of sexual harassment and assault for at least twenty years. He used these kinds of agreements with employees, business partners, and women who made allegations—women who were often much younger and far less powerful than Weinstein, and who signed under pressure from attorneys on both sides.”
As Farrow reports, a number of these settlements had secret financial payments included in them, at least one of which Farrow asserts Bob Weinstein paid for personally. Farrow’s report holds that Bob Weinstein “paid two hundred and fifty thousand pounds, roughly six hundred thousand dollars today, to be split between two female employees in England who accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment and assault. The funds came from Bob Weinstein’s personal bank account—a move that helped conceal the payment from executives at Miramax and its parent company, Disney, as well as from Harvey Weinstein’s spouse.”
Bob Weinstein did respond to Farrow in a recent interview, though he claimed that Harvey Weinstein had “misled” him at to the necessity and reason for that payment. Bob Weinstein said, “Regarding that payment, I only know what Harvey told me, and basically what he said was he was fooling around with two women and they were asking for money. And he didn’t want his wife to find out, so he asked me if I could write a check, and so I did, but there was nothing to indicate any kind of sexual harassment.”
Yet a former senior Miramax executive told Farrow that it was “implausible that Bob Weinstein did not know about the nature of the allegations, which were reported to the company.” Last month, Bob Weinstein was accused of sexual harassment by former “The Mist” showrunner Amanda Segel.