Actor Kevin Spacey on trial over New York sex abuse claim – Capital Radio Malawi
19 April, 2024

Actor Kevin Spacey on trial over New York sex abuse claim

Actor Kevin Spacey walks outside the Manhattan Federal Court during his sex abuse trial in New York, U.S., October 6, 2022. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey has gone on trial in New York over an allegation he sexually assaulted a boy 36 years ago.

Spacey is facing a civil lawsuit brought by Anthony Rapp, who says the actor inappropriately touched him at a party in 1986 when he was aged 14.

Spacey, 63, is separately facing five charges of sexual assault in the UK.

The House of Cards actor has denied the allegations against him.

Both Rapp, now 51 and also an actor, and Spacey were in the Manhattan federal courthouse when the trial opened with jury selection on Thursday.

Rapp says that Spacey was around 26 or 27 years old when he met him at a party at his Manhattan apartment.

In a Buzzfeed article from October 2017, Rapp said that Spacey had picked him up, placed him on a bed and lay down partially on top of him.

“I was aware that he was trying to get with me sexually,” Rapp said.

His lawsuit says the alleged encounter lasted no more than two minutes and “there was no kissing, no undressing, no reaching under clothes, and no sexualized statements or innuendo”.

The legal action was filed in September 2020 and accuses Spacey – whose real name is Kevin Spacey Fowler – of battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Rapp is reportedly seeking $40m (£35m) in damages.

The judge assigned to the case, Lewis A Kaplan, previously dismissed a charge of sexual assault, ruling the statute of limitations had expired.

One day after the Buzzfeed article was posted five years ago, Spacey took to social media to say he had no memory of what Rapp described.

“If I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior,” he wrote.

“And I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years.”

In a video deposition he filmed with lawyers in January, Spacey denied that the incident ever took place, according to news website Law & Crime.

Rapp’s account “couldn’t have been true”, he said, because “I am not interested in boys and I do not touch people inappropriately”.

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