Gérard Depardieu faces fresh sexual assault complaint over alleged groping

Gérard Depardieu faces fresh sexual assault complaint over alleged groping

The French actor Gérard Depardieu is facing another accusation of sexual assault, this time from a movie decorator who alleges he groped her during filming in 2021.

In the complaint to the Paris prosecutor’s office, she accuses the 75-year-old Depardieu of sexual assault, sexual harassment and sexist insults, her Paris lawyer, Carine Durrieu Diebolt, said Monday.

Depardieu, best known for his roles in Cyrano de Bergerac and Green Card, has previously been accused by more than a dozen other women of harassing, groping or sexually assaulting them.

The 53-year-old decorator alleges that Depardieu grabbed her and kneaded her waist, stomach and breasts during filming for “Les Volets verts,” (The Green Shutters), the lawyer said. Other people intervened to stop the alleged assault, the lawyer added.

Durrieu Diebolt told BFM TV: “At the time, she didn’t press charges because she didn’t want to mar the work of her colleagues and the release of the film, and the kindness of the film crew allowed her to think she was going to be fine. But the trauma persisted.”

The lawyer said that the plaintiff has been unable to work, and had anxiety attacks and symptoms of post-traumatic stress following the events of the assault.

Depardieu’s representatives have not commented on the recent filing.

Durrieu Diebolt told AFP she sent her complaint to the Paris public prosecutor’s office last Friday, alleging sexual assault, sexist insult and harassment. The public prosecutor will decide if there is a case and what legal action should be taken.

Depardieu pictured at a press conference for ‘Saint Amour’ in 2016 (Getty Images)
Depardieu pictured at a press conference for ‘Saint Amour’ in 2016 (Getty Images)

In 2020, Depardieu was indicted on rape and sexual assault charges after being accused of raping and sexually assaulting French film star Charlotte Arnould, 28, at his Paris mansion in 2018.

In April 2023, Depardieu was accused of sexually inappropriate behaviour by 13 women. He denied the claims at the time.

In January, prosecutors ordered the closure of a case brought by the actor Hélène Darras, who alleged Depardieu had sexually abused her during the filming of the 2008 film Disco, because it was past the statute of limitations.

Last year, Depardieu claimed he’s “neither a rapist, nor a predator” in an open letter published in the French-language newspaper Le Figaro.

In the piece, the My Father the Hero star wrote that he “can no longer consent to what I’ve heard, what I’ve read about myself for several months”.

“I thought I didn’t care, but no, actually no. This all gets to me,” Depardieu said.

“To the media court, to the lynching that has been reserved for me, I have only my word to defend myself.”

Rape Crisis offers support for those affected by rape and sexual abuse. You can call them on 0808 802 9999 in England and Wales, 0808 801 0302 in Scotland, and 0800 0246 991 in Northern Ireland, or visit their website at www.rapecrisis.org.uk. If you are in the US, you can call Rainn on 800-656-HOPE (4673).

With additional reporting from AP Newswire.