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“Crash” director and “Million Dollar Baby” writer Paul Haggis has been arrested in Italy on charges of sexual assault and aggravated personal injury, according to local reports.
According to Corriere della Serra, Haggis, 70, has been accused by an unidentified woman of forcing her to have sex with him over two days in the town of Ostuni, where he is scheduled this week to hold a series of master classes at a local film festival called Allora Fest alongside Edward Norton and “The Motorcycle Diaries” producer Michael Nozik. The festival is set to take place June 21-26.
The unidentified woman told police that after assaulting her, Haggis left her at a Brindisi airport before dawn “despite her precarious physical and psychological conditions.” She was assisted at the airport by staff and border police before being taken to the hospital, where she pressed charges against Haggis with investigators.
Haggis has previously been accused of sexual abuse by four other women, including a publicist who accused him in 2018 of raping her at a premiere five years prior and filed a civil suit against him. Haggis has vehemently denied all wrongdoing. Representatives for Haggis could not be immediately reached for comment.