Harvey Weinstein ran a global company and now he is being accused of global sexual misconduct.
And while legal experts continue to argue about whether Weinstein may or may not face prosecution in the United States, British police are actively assessing an alleged Weinstein sex crime.
Although the alleged assault took place in the 1980s, there is no statute of limitations on serious sex crimes in the U.K., meaning that accusations of historic abuse do often get taken to trial.
Three British actresses made public accusations against Weinstein on Thursday, one of whom claimed she was forced to hide in a bathroom to escape his advances and found him masturbating in the doorway when she finally opened it.
In a statement Thursday, London’s Metropolitan police force said they had received a formal complaint. “The Met have been passed an allegation of sexual assault by Merseyside Police,” a spokesman said. “The allegation will be assessed by officers from Child Abuse and Sexual Offences Command.”
Liverpool’s Merseyside police added: “We can confirm a report was received at 8:40 a.m. on Wednesday of an alleged sexual assault in the London area in the 1980s. The report has been referred to the Metropolitan Police.”
The alleged assault is the first to be reported to police in the U.K. since the Weinstein sex scandal broke.
Several British actresses have come forward over the past 24 hours with allegations against Weinstein.
British actress Kate Beckinsale said Weinstein tried to ply her with drink when she was just 17.
A former pop star and model, Mylene Klass, said Thursday night said that Weinstein, “asked me to sign some kind of sex contract with him.”
She said: “I just thought, ‘Mate, which planet are you from?’ Then his PA came over with a confidentiality contract. I just thought, ‘Oh my God, your poor wife.’ I don’t want to be a marriage-wrecker.”
Another British actress, Sophie Dix, came forward to say that she too had been assaulted by Weinstein—describing it as “the single most damaging thing that’s happened in my life.”
In 1990, Dix, then 22, said Weinstein invited her for dinner and then asked her to come to his hotel room to watch footage of a film he was working on.
She said she “naively” accepted.
“It was an exciting time of my life. I was open and trusting and I had never met a predator; I had never considered a predator,” she said.
The episode ended with “him pulling at my trousers and stuff and looming over me and I just sort of—I am a big strong girl and I bolted... ran for the bathroom and locked the door.”
Opening the door, she found him blocking the doorway and masturbating.
Beckinsale, who starred in The Aviator, said Weinstein summoned her to a meeting but had opened his door at the Savoy Hotel in London dressed only in a bathrobe before trying to get her to drink.
The actress wrote on Instagram: “I assumed it would be in a conference room which was very common. When I arrived, reception told me to go to his room. He opened the door in his bathrobe.
“I was incredibly naive and young and it did not cross my mind that this older, unattractive man would expect me to have any sexual interest in him. After declining alcohol and announcing that I had school in the morning I left, uneasy but unscathed.”
She added: “A few years later he asked me if he had tried anything with me in that first meeting. I realized he couldn’t remember if he had assaulted me or not.”
“I was aware that standing up for myself and saying no to things… undoubtedly harmed my career and was never something I felt supported by anyone other than my family."