Asia Argento attends 'Forte Forte Forte' TV show photocall at RAI Voxon Studios on January 8, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Elisabetta A. Villa/Getty Images)

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Weinstein Accuser Asia Argento Allegedly Paid Off Actor Who Claims She Sexually Assaulted Him

Argento is accused of funneling $380,000 in hush money to an actor.

Actress Asia Argento allegedly paid hush money to young actor Jimmy Bennett after he accused her of sexually assaulting him in California when he was barely 17, according to an explosive new report in the New York Times.

Argento became a leading figure in the #MeToo movement after accusing Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein of raping her — but she has not responded to the Times’ requests for comment after reporters uncovered documents showing that Argento paid $380,000 to Bennett. The payment allegedly was to keep him quiet after a “traumatic” 2013 encounter between the two in a hotel room.

“The fallout from “a sexual battery” was so traumatic that it hindered Mr. Bennett’s work and income and threatened his mental health,” the younger actor’s lawyer said in court papers acquired by the Times.

“Mr. Bennett made more than $2.7 million in the five years before the 2013 meeting with Ms. Argento, but his income has since dropped to an average of $60,000 a year, which he attributes to the trauma that followed the sexual encounter with Ms. Argento, his lawyer wrote,” the Times reported.

The Times also reported that Bennett’s lawyer sent Argento’s attorney, Richard Hofstetter, an intent to sue in November. Hofstetter was also Anthony Bourdain’s lawyer for years before Bourdain died by suicide in June 2018, and the TV host reportedly helped Argento, who was his girlfriend at the time of his death, “navigate the matter.”

Argento and Bennett first met when Bennett was 7-years-old. He portrayed her son in a movie.

Read the full story at the New York Times