Weinstein seeks mercy in $45M suit amid health issues, upcoming rape trial

'The weight is too much to bear all at once for Mr. Weinstein'

A lawyer for scandal-marred movie mogul Harvey  Weinstein has asked a judge to put a $45 million civil case on hold while the Miramax co-founder takes care of his deteriorated health and his controversial criminal case, court records show.

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"Already encumbered with preparation for his impending criminal trial, coupled with the pain of orthopedic injuries causing significant ambulatory issues and requiring surgery, the weight is too much to bear all at once for Mr. Weinstein," attorney Imran Ansari wrote Monday in his letter to New York Supreme Court Judge Saliann Scarpulla.

Ansari submitted the two-page document in reference to a civil case brought against Weinstein by AI International Holding, which accuses the 67-year-old filmmaker of reneging on a $45 million loan they had issued to him before he parted ways with unspecified "corporate defendants," which the New York Post identifies as being Weinstein Co.

He wrote in the letter that AI International "does not oppose" the request.

"To proceed in light of the circumstances detailed herein will cause Mr. Weinstein significant personal and physical hardship, an inability to participate in the defense of this matter, and result in prejudice," Ansari wrote.

New York Post cover, Dec. 16, 2019

The memo was submitted to the court just one day after Page Six released an exclusive interview with the 67-year-old filmmaker, who griped about how his work supporting women in the film industry had been "forgotten."

"I made more movies directed by women and about women than any filmmaker, and I'm talking about 30 years ago ... I did it first! I pioneered it!" he told the outlet.

At the time of the interview, Weinstein was recovering from spine surgery at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center to treat injuries sustained during a mid-August car crash.

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Taylor Swift, Este Haim, Jaime King, Harvey Weinstein and Lorde attend The Weinstein Company & Netflix's 2015 Golden Globes After Party in 2015 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Angela Weiss/Getty Images for TWC)

He has reportedly been accused by more than 80 women of inappropriate sexual behavior. Twenty-three of his accusers, including Rose McGowan and Rosanna Arquette, spoke out in a statement released late Sunday, in which they wrote they "refuse to let this predator rewrite his legacy of abuse."

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McGowan later released a tweet of her own. She wrote: "This is about stopping a prolific rapist. You."

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Weinstein was photographed earlier in December relying on a walker as he left a Manhattan courthouse, appearing weak and pained. He faces a Jan. 6 trial on rape and sexual assault charges. His bail was recently increased from $1 million to $5 million after he allegedly mishandling his electronic ankle monitor.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.