Asia Argento says the man who accused her of sexually assaulting him when he was 17 actually assaulted her. In a statement issued to TMZ on Tuesday, Argento’s lawyer, Mark Jay Heller, said Argento’s accuser, actor Jimmy Bennett, was the real perpetrator. “Asia chose at the time not to prosecute Bennett for sexually attacking her,” Heller said. Text messages that Argento purportedly sent to a friend about the incident saying she was “frozen” at the time and that the “horny kid jumped me” reflect the real circumstances behind the alleged assault, according to Heller. He went on to accuse Bennett of trying to extort money from Argento once he realized she was dating Anthony Bourdain. “Asia does not intend to prosecute Bennett for his conduct and recognizes that his unfortunate past, his stalled acting career, and a lawsuit against his own parents” might have caused his “desperation,” Heller said. Argento initially denied having “any sexual relationship” with Bennett when reports broke last month that she had paid him $380,000 to settle his sexual-assault allegations against her. TMZ later published text messages said to have been sent by Argento, as well as a photo of her and Bennett apparently in bed together, that appeared to contradict her statement.
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