Harvey Weinstein tests positive for coronavirus in prison

By Associated Press reporter

Harvey Weinstein has tested positive for the coronavirus at a state prison in New York while serving a 23-year sentence for rape and sexual assault.

The 68-year-old former film producer, who was taken to hospital with heart issues in recent weeks, was diagnosed and quarantined just days after being transferred to the state’s maximum security Wende Correctional Facility near Buffalo.

Weinstein was previously locked up at New York City’s notorious Rikers Island jail complex, which has had a spate of coronavirus cases.

The state prison system confirmed that two inmates at Wende have tested positive for Covid-19, but did not identify them because it said it cannot comment on individual inmate medical records.

A courtroom sketch of Harvey Weinstein (Elizabeth Williams via AP)

Michael Powers, president of the New York State Correctional Officers and Police Benevolent Association, said Weinstein was one of the prisoners with the virus. Five officers and two supervisors at Wende were also placed in isolation because of possible exposure to the virus, he said.

The Niagara Gazette first reported Weinstein’s diagnosis.

Weinstein was sent to Wende last Wednesday, the day before the state prison system stopped accepting inmates from local jails in an effort to halt the spread of coronavirus.

Weinstein’s spokesman and defence lawyer said they were not aware of the diagnosis. His condition and prognosis were not immediately known.

Weinstein is the Oscar-winning producer of Shakespeare In Love.