Caught in the Theranos Wreckage: Betsy DeVos, Rupert Murdoch and Walmart’s Waltons

Newly unsealed court documents reveal that some of the world’s richest people invested millions in the discredited blood-testing company Theranos.

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Harvey Weinstein Accused in Lawsuit of Sexually Assaulting Producer for Years

The lawsuit came the same day the New York attorney general’s office said it would review the handling of a 2015 allegation against Mr. Weinstein in Manhattan.

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Weinstein Company Declares a Winner in Its Bankruptcy Sale

The Weinstein Company imploded in October after dozens of women publicly accused its former chief executive, Harvey Weinstein, of sexual misconduct stretching back decades. It announced on March 19 that it would file for bankruptcy. The movie and television studio, once known for Oscar-winning films like “The King’s Speech” and “The Artist,” had less than $500,000 in cash. It was facing a mountain of debt and a swelling number of lawsuits, including one by New York’s attorney general.

Lawyers for the studio had bragged that its assets — a library of old films, a small television production business and a handful of unreleased new films — had drawn interest from as many as 60 potential bidders. But in the end there appeared to be only Lantern, with its bid to keep the studio whole; Sonar Entertainment, with a nibble on the television division; and Inclusion Media, led by Mr. Kagan, a former partner at the hedge fund Harbinger Capital who has reinvented himself as a Tony Award-winning producer of Broadway shows like “Pippin.”

Inclusion’s $315 million proposal, which the Weinstein Company said was submitted after the deadline and did not meet other requirements for a qualified bid, was notable for including a settlement fund for Mr. Weinstein’s victims of at least $25 million.

On Tuesday, five of the named plaintiffs in one of the lawsuits pending against Mr. Weinstein said in a news release that they “strongly opposed” the Lantern purchase, which did not include a specific fund for victims, and that they supported Mr. Kagan’s effort.

“We’re here to show them the assault survivors will not go away quietly,” a lawyer for the plaintiffs, Elizabeth Fegan, said in the release.

In its statement on Tuesday, the Weinstein Company acknowledged that Inclusion “did claim to offer certain attractive aspects for victims,” but said it concluded that Inclusion’s interest was not a “bona fide offer.” The company added, “In furtherance of its fiduciary duty, the board selected the bid that offered, with certainty, the most overall value.”

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Trial Date Set for Dispute Over Broadway ‘Mockingbird’

Judge Torres said that if a judge in Alabama decides to let that suit go forward, then that is where the dispute could be resolved. She added, though, that the production company, Rudinplay, had raised questions about whether Alabama was the proper venue, and the parties should prepare for a trial in New York.

“Plaintiff has a compelling need for speedy resolution,” she said, adding that the case would proceed in New York if the suit in Alabama is dismissed.

The play, which has been scheduled to open in December starring Jeff Daniels in the role of Atticus Finch, has been in the works since 2015, when Ms. Lee signed an agreement giving Rudinplay the right to “adapt the novel into a live stage play.” The agreement paid Ms. Lee $100,000 for a 24-month option and stated that the play could “not derogate or depart” from the spirit of the book or alter its characters.

The producers offered to put on a courthouse performance of the legal drama in their original filings. That discussion continued Monday with Judge Aaron. One possibility discussed was videotaping a performance, perhaps in advance of a live version to be later put on in court. At one point, Mr. Lembke told the judge that he thought someone from his side should be present to watch any performance being recorded.

Judge Aaron indicated that he was not inclined to grant that request.

“In the court’s view you are asking to get backstage,” he said, adding: “You have to stay out in the mezzanine.”

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Gig Economy Business Model Dealt a Blow in California Ruling

The state’s highest court made it much harder for companies like Uber to classify workers as contractors rather than employees.

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Lawsuit Accusing Russell Simmons of Rape is Dropped


Russell Simmons strongly denied the accusations. His legal team submitted an answer in court saying the complaint was “filled with lies.” Credit Scott Roth/Invision, via Associated Press

A lawsuit accusing the music mogul Russell Simmons of rape was dropped from federal court in Los Angeles on Wednesday.

The complaint was filed in January by Jennifer Jarosik, 37, who sought $5 million in damages. She said that she had first met Mr. Simmons in 2006 when he had offered to help her produce a documentary. Ms. Jarosik said that Mr. Simmons raped her at his home in Los Angeles in 2016 and that afterward she felt humiliation, fear and depression.

On April 4, Mr. Simmons’s legal team submitted an answer in court that strongly denied the accusations, saying that the complaint was “filled with lies against Mr. Simmons, who has only ever tried to help her.”

The filing claims that the sexual encounter was consensual and alludes to a series of text messages in which Ms. Jarosik expresses affection for Mr. Simmons. It also claims that Ms. Jarosik sent unsolicited nude photos to Mr. Simmons after the date on which she said the rape had occurred.

A court document disclosed on Wednesday said that all charges had been dropped. It was unclear whether a settlement was reached. A spokesman for Glaser Weil Fink Howard Avchen & Shapiro, the law firm representing Mr. Simmons, declined to comment. Perry C. Wander, a lawyer for Ms. Jarosik, was unavailable for comment.

Ms. Jarosik is one of at least 10 women who have accused Mr. Simmons of sexual misconduct, assault or rape over the last few months. An additional lawsuit accusing Mr. Simmons of rape was filed in March; the complainant, a woman identified as Jane Doe, is seeking $10 million in damages.

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Prince’s Family Sues Hospital That Treated His First Opioid Overdose

Lawyers for Prince’s family, George Loucas and John Goetz, said in a statement Monday: “What happened to Prince is happening to families across America. The family wishes through its investigation to shed light on this epidemic and how to better the fight to save lives. If Prince’s death helps save lives, then all was not lost.”

The lawsuit names Trinity Medical Center, the Illinois hospital where Prince was treated, along with its parent companies. Also named is Nicole F. Mancha, a doctor who provided Prince care at the hospital, as well as an unidentified pharmacist or pharmacy employee “that consulted” in the care provided to Prince.

Representatives for the hospital could not immediately be reached for comment.

The family is also suing Walgreens, charging its employees with “dispensing narcotic prescription medications” to the singer for an invalid medical purpose and failing to conduct the appropriate drug utilization review.

Upon landing in Illinois, Prince, who was barely breathing, was carried off his jet by his longtime friend and employee Kirk Johnson, who told paramedics that the singer may have taken a Percocet after his concert, according to police reports. (A Minnesota physician, Michael Schulenberg, settled with the federal government on Thursday, after telling investigators that he had written Prince a prescription for Percocet in Mr. Johnson’s name; as part of the settlement, the doctor admitted no liability.)

It took two shots of Narcan, a medication used to reverse an opioid overdose, to revive the singer, and he was transported to Trinity Medical Center.

Dr. Mancha, in an interview with those investigating the musician’s death, said Prince told her he had taken two Percocet, though she believed he was lying, she added, because the amount of that prescription drug would not have required two shots of Narcan. The singer refused all testing, including having blood drawn and undergoing a urine toxicology report, in what his friends later said was an effort to conceal his addiction to painkillers from the public. Prince, who was known for his privacy, left the hospital without further treatment and returned to his Paisley Park home in Minnesota, according to investigators.

Alexander Stein, a professor at Brooklyn Law School who writes about medical malpractice, said that while “in some states this would be a very difficult case to win,” Illinois tends to be “pro-patient.”

Judith Hill, a singer who was on the flight that landed in Illinois, said Prince had told her he had taken an unidentified pill stored in a Bayer aspirin bottle. Dr. Mancha said that the pills resembled hydrocodone (or Vicodin) and that she sent one to a pharmacy to be identified. The pill, which had the inscription Watson 853, was identified at the pharmacy as hydrocodone, though it was not tested for its authenticity, Dr. Mancha said.

After Prince’s death, investigators discovered a Bayer bottle from his nightstand at Paisley Park containing 64.5 pills labeled Watson 853. Those pills were found to be counterfeit and contained fentanyl, though investigators did not definitively say whether they were the exact painkillers that had caused Prince to overdose.

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Eric Holder Speaks With The Times

Eric Holder, the United States attorney general under President Barack Obama, said Facebook should be viewed as a communication company and be regulated.

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Russell Simmons Accused of Rape in New Lawsuit


Russell Simmons in 2016. He denied the allegations in a lawsuit that was filed on Friday. Credit Emily Berl for The New York Times

Russell Simmons has once again been accused of rape. A woman identified as Jane Doe filed a $10 million lawsuit against him in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Friday. Mr. Simmons, the music mogul who co-founded Def Jam Recordings, denied the claim.

In the suit, the woman alleges that she and her son met Mr. Simmons at a concert. Following the performances, Mr. Simmons invited them backstage and, after dropping her son off at home, took the woman out for drinks. At the end of the night, Mr. Simmons asked her to accompany him to his hotel room: “She was reluctant, but Simmons insisted it was not an invitation to have sexual relations since he was dating a well-known model,” the complaint reads. The suit then alleges that he raped her in the room.

The complaint seeks $10 million in damages for forcible rape, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligent infliction of emotional distress. The lawsuit does not specify when the woman says she met Mr. Simmons.

In a statement to Billboard, Mr. Simmons said he “vehemently” denied all of the allegations. “They have shocked me to my core as I have never been abusive or violent in any way in my relations with women,” the statement said. “I have submitted myself to multiple lie detector tests.”

Over the past few months, Mr. Simmons has been accused of sexual misconduct, assault or rape by multiple women, and is the focus of a police investigation in New York City. In January, an aspiring filmmaker named Jennifer Jarosik filed a $5 million lawsuit that claimed Mr. Simmons attacked her during a 2016 visit to his home. He stepped down from his companies in November.

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