Luc Besson: Rape case reopened against Fifth Element director, says lawyer

Actor Sand Van Roy came forward against Besson last year

Clémence Michallon
New York
Friday 04 October 2019 18:48 BST
Luc Besson at the 68th Berlinale film festival on 17 February, 2018 in Berlin.
Luc Besson at the 68th Berlinale film festival on 17 February, 2018 in Berlin.

A rape case against French director Luc Besson has been reopened.

The French news agency Agence France-Presse announced the news on Friday, citing the filmmaker’s accuser’s lawyer.

The complaint against Besson had initially been dropped in February.

Sand Van Roy, the actor who accused Besson of allegedly raping her, tweeted: “My case is no longer dismissed! An independent judge has opened the investigation.

“Despite the prosecutor’s decision to drop all charges the judge decided to re-open the case!”

Van Roy came forward against Besson in May 2018, saying that the director had allegedly assaulted her at a hotel in Paris.

Besson’s lawyer, Thierry Marembert, told AFP at the time that the filmmaker “categorically denies these fantasist accusations”.

Nine months into the investigation, the Paris prosecutor’s office dismissed the charges against Besson, citing a lack of evidence.

Francis Spizner, Van Roy’s attorney, tweeted on Friday: “Despite the prosecution’s opposition, the Besson affair is now the subject of an investigation.”

Several more women accused Besson of alleged sexual misconduct in the wake of Van Roy’s complaint. Besson (the director of films such as The Fifth Element and Leon) has denied all allegations of inappropriate behaviour.

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Thierry Marembert, Besson’s lawyer, told The Independent that he and his client were taking note of the new investigation.

“We have high hopes that the judge will reach the same conclusions as the prosecutor’s office, which has been following the case for more than a year and expressed very clearly that Mr Besson didn’t commit any crime,” Marembert added.

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