Asia Argento has threatened “immediate legal action” against fellow #MeToo campaigner Rose McGowan.
Both women have been prominent figures in the Harvey Weinstein scandal, both claiming to have been raped and sexually assaulted by the former Hollywood mogul.
However, Argento’s reputation has been somewhat disgraced amid claims that she sexually assaulted child actorJimmy Bennett. The accusations go as far as suggesting that Argento paid off the young actor in excess of $380,000 to keep quiet.
In the wake of these accusations, which Argento is now denying, McGowan reacted by saying her “heart is broken” following the claims.
Now, in a bizarre twist, the #MeToo campaigners could face time in court against each other after Argento said: “Dear Rose McGowan,” in a statement on social media. “It is with genuine regret that I am giving you 24 hours to retract and apologise for the horrendous lies made against me in your statement of August 27th. If you fail to address this libel I will have no option other than to take immediate legal action.”
Bennett has made the claims that in May 2013 he met Argento at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Marina Del Rey, California where she allegedly gave him alcohol and had sex with him. At the time, he had only just turned 17, while Argento was 37, the age of consent in California is 18.
Remaining silent through the process, a new statement has been published by Rolling Stone which describes how her lawyer claims she did not initiate the incident with the child actor. Delving deeper, Argento instead claims she became “frozen” when Bennett allegedly got on top of her. Continuing, the statement explains how Argento “chose at the time not to prosecute”.
In reference to the settlement paid to Bennett, she said that she “will not permit any portion of the balance” overdue because of “this falsely alleged incident”.
In a new and somewhat disturbing turn, the statement then makes fresh allegations against Bennett which include a claim that the former child actor was charged by the LA police department for “unlawful sex with a minor”, “stalking”, “child pornography” and “child exploitation” in 2014.