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Actor feared speaking out about alleged Asia Aregento assault

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Italian actress and director Asia Argento arrives at the ninth annual Women in the World Summit in New York in April. Argento, one of the most prominent activists of the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment, recently settled a complaint filed against her by a young actor and musician who said she sexually assaulted him when he was 17, the New York Times reported.

LOS ANGELES >> A young actor who alleged in legal documents that actress Asia Argento sexually assaulted him when he was 17 says his trauma resurfaced when Argento came out as a victim of sexual assault herself.

The statement released today through an attorney by Jimmy Bennett, now 22, is his first public comment since a Sunday New York Times story saying Argento reached a legal settlement with him last year over an alleged sexual assault in a California hotel room.

Bennett says he initially chose to deal with the situation privately and until now has been “ashamed and afraid” to speak publicly.

His comments come a day after Argento denied having a sexual relationship with him.

The 42-year-old Argento has been a key figure in the #MeToo movement since alleging last year that Harvey Weinstein raped her when she was 21.

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