Hollywood Star Paul Haggis Arrested on Sexual Assault Charges in Italy

Oscar-winning Hollywood star Paul Haggis has been arrested on charges of sexual assault by authorities in Italy, according to reports.

The Crash director was arrested in a town in southern Italy on Sunday.

Renowned screenwriter and director Haggis, 69, is in Italy for a film festival that begins on Tuesday in Ostuni, a tourist town in Puglia.

Festival organizers quickly moved to remove Haggis from the program.

Following an examination at a hospital, the woman “formalized her complaint and cited circumstances which were subsequently looked into for confirmation by investigators.” The victim also filed formal charges against Haggis.

Police arrested Haggis on suspicion of sexual assault and aggravated personal injury.

Allora Fest organizers said they “learned with dismay and shock the news that Paul Haggis is in custody for alleged violence” and “immediately proceeded to remove any participation of[Haggis from the event.”

“The themes chosen for the festival are, among others, those of equality, gender equality, and solidarity,” organizers said.

“As professionals and women they are dismayed and hope that the festival will help foster more information and awareness on such a topical and increasingly pressing issue.”

In 2017 and early 2018, several women came forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against Haggis.

Prosecutors Antonio Negro and Livia Orlando said the woman was “forced to seek medical care” followong the sexual relations.

After a couple of days “of non-consensual relations, the woman was accompanied by the man” to Brindisi airport on Sunday and “was left there at dawn despite her precarious physical and psychological conditions.”

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By David Hawkins

David Hawkins is a writer who specializes in political commentary and world affairs. He's been writing professionally since 2014.

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