French filmmaker Luc Besson cleared of all charges in rape case

French filmmaker Luc Besson has been cleared of all charges in the rape case involving Belgian-Dutch actress Sand Van Roy.

The judgment was delivered on Wednesday June 21 by the Court of Cassation, the French equivalent of the Supreme Court. The court document, obtained by Variety, specifies that “after examination of the admissibility of the appeal and the files of the instruction, the Court of Cassation noted that there is, at the present time, no means of allowing the admission of the appeal”. As part of the judgment, Van Roy was ordered to pay €2,500 to Besson.

More Variety

This is the fourth and final judicial investigation in this case. The legal battle began with Van Roy’s complaints to the police filed in May and July 2018. The case was dismissed by the Paris prosecutor’s office after a nine-month investigation in February 2019, citing a lack of evidence. Van Roy then filed a civil complaint for the same charges in March 2019, which was again dismissed after a three-year investigation in December 2021 and involved hearings with witnesses, including Besson’s ex-wife, l actor-director Maïwenn (“Jeanne du Barry”), with whom he has a daughter; and his former companion Anne Parillaud, actress with whom he has two children. It also included expert opinions from the civil party and an interrogation of Besson. Van Roy then appealed the decision and again lost.

The judgment of the Court of Cassation clears Besson of all charges in this case and prevents Van Roy from prosecuting him for the same charges in France or elsewhere in Europe. She had previously tried to file a complaint in Belgium, in vain.

The actor, who had a small role in ‘Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets’, has alleged that she and Besson had an abusive affair which began on the set of ‘Valerian’ and culminated in a rape on the night of May 17, 2018, at the Bristol Hotel in Paris.

“This decision confirms the dismissal in favor of Luc Besson and confirms all the decisions of the last five years which declared him not guilty,” said Besson’s lawyer, Thierry Marambert, in a statement sent to Variety.

“It therefore puts a definitive end to this procedure initiated in 2018, during which Luc Besson was systematically cleared by all the magistrates who examined the file”, continued Marambert.

After a four-year hiatus, Besson is making a comeback as a director with “DogMan,” a drama starring Caleb Landry Jones, which is set to have its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival. The company he founded, EuropaCorp, was taken over by New York-based Vine Alternative Investment in a financial restructuring deal finalized in 2020.

The best of variety

Subscribe to the Variety newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Click here to read the full article.

Leave a Comment