Asia Argento Reportedly Abused, Paid Off 17-Year-Old

By Chris Jasurek

Actress Asia Argento reportedly paid off a 17-year-old actor after having consensual sex with him in a California hotel room in 2013.

According to documents sent to the New York Times, the 42-year-old actress had an encounter with 17-year-old actor and musician Jimmy Bennett at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Marina del Rey, California. Argento was 37 at the time.

Jimmy Bennett arrives at the premiere of Relativity Media's '21 And Over' on February 21, 2013
Actor Jimmy Bennett arrives at the premiere of Relativity Media’s ’21 And Over’ at the Village Theatre in Los Angeles on Feb. 21, 2013. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Based on a letter of intent to sue sent to Argento’s lawyers by Bennet’s lawyer in November 2017, the young man sought $3.5 million for the intentional infliction of emotional distress, lost wages, assault, and battery. The age of consent in California is 18 years of age.

The pair had known each other for a decade at the time. Bennett played Argento’s son in the 2004 film The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things, when Bennett was 7-years old.

Jimmy Bennett (center, long blond hair) at the premiere of 'Star Trek' on April 30, 2009
(L-R) Actors Anton Yelchin, Zachary Quinto, executive/producer Bryan Burk, Eric Bana, Chris Pine, Jimmy Bennett, director/producer J.J. Abrams, actors Zoe Saldana and Karl Urban arrive at the Los Angeles premiere of ‘Star Trek’ in Hollywood on April 30, 2009. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

The documents claim that Argento paid the actor $380,000 as per an agreement reached between Bennett and Argento’s lawyer, Carrie Goldberg, in April 2018.

Neither Argento, her lawyers, nor Bennet would consent to an interview. Bennet’s lawyer, Gordon K. Sattro, emailed the Times saying “In the coming days Jimmy will continue doing what he has been doing over the past months and years, focusing on his music.”

NTD Photo
Harvey Weinstein arrives at court in New York on June 5, 2018. Weinstein pleaded not guilty Tuesday to rape and criminal sex act charges in New York. The hearing in Manhattan comes after a grand jury indicted the former movie mogul last week on charges involving two women. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Argento Led the Charge Against Sexual Abuse in Hollywood

Asia Argento accused studio mogul Harvey Weinstein of sexual impropriety, leading to him being fired and the opening of multiple criminal investigations in multiple countries.

Argento was one of 13 prominent Hollywood actresses who said that Weinstein acted inappropriately toward them, with varying degrees of severity, over a span of decades.

Argento claimed that he first forced himself on her in 1997, and that there were other encounters through the years where she was afraid to refuse his advances because of the power he wielded in the industry.

Asia Argento attends the 2018 Women In The World Summit at Lincoln Center, April 12, 2018
Actor/director Asia Argento attends the 2018 Women In The World Summit at Lincoln Center in New York City on April 12, 2018. (Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images)

The accusations were published in The New Yorker in October 2017—one month before Bennett decided to threaten to sue.

The outgrowth of these revelations—supported by such respected actresses as Ashley Judd, Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie and Rose McGowan—led to the “#MeToo” movement, which encourages women everywhere to come forward with their stories of sexual mistreatment, to end the culture of abuse and intimidation or payoff which has plagued society, most notably in Hollywood, for an unconscionable length of time.