Kevin Spacey to ‘voluntarily appear’ in U.K. court for sexual assault charges

Actor Kevin Spacey attends the reading of the event "The Boxer - La nostalgia del poeta" (The Boxer - The nostalgia of the poet) at Palazzo Massimo alle Terme on August 02, 2019 in Rome, Italy. Getty

After being charged with four counts of sexual assault last week, actor Kevin Spacey said he plans to “voluntarily appear” and defend himself before the British courts.

In an exclusive statement to Good Morning America, Spacey, 62, said he is “confident” he can prove his innocence in the charges relating to four alleged sexual assaults involving three separate men.

The charges, which were authorized by the Crown Prosecution Service of the U.K. on Thursday, are alleged to have occurred in London and Gloucestershire between March 2005 and April 2013.

An additional charge of “causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent” has also been authorized against Spacey, stemming from an alleged assault on one of the three men in August 2008 in London.

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Since the four charges are authorized by the U.K. courts, Spacey can only be formally charged upon reentry and arrest in England or Wales. According to the Washington Post, it is unclear as of now if the former House of Cards actor will be extradited to the country.

Rosemary Ainslie, the head of the Crown’s special crime division, said the charges were laid following the prosecution service’s one-year review of Spacey’s case. Metropolitan Police had already investigated and gathered evidence, and the actor was questioned by British police in 2019.

“The Crown Prosecution Service reminds all concerned that criminal proceedings against Mr. Spacey are active and that he has the right to a fair trial,” Ainslie said.

Through a spokesperson, Spacey provided the following statement:

“I very much appreciate the Crown Prosecution Service’s statement in which they carefully reminded the media and the public that I am entitled to a fair trial, and innocent until proven otherwise. While I am disappointed with their decision to move forward, I will voluntarily appear in the U.K. as soon as can be arranged and defend myself against these charges, which I am confident will prove my innocence.”

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The two-time Academy Award-winning actor first faced allegations of sexual assault in 2017, when actor Anthony Rapp accused Spacey of assaulting him at a party in the 1980s, when Rapp was 14 years old.

At the time of the initial allegation, Spacey responded on Twitter, claiming he did not recall the incident with Rapp, though he apologized nevertheless.

A civil sexual assault lawsuit was filed in the U.S. by Rapp against Spacey in 2020. The case is still ongoing, though Spacey asked the judge to dismiss the lawsuit in April.

The U.K. charges were announced Thursday as Spacey was testifying in a courtroom in New York City in the civil lawsuit filed by Rapp. Spacey didn’t respond to reporters as he left the courthouse talking on his mobile phone.

Another criminal case brought against Spacey, an indecent assault and battery charge stemming from the alleged groping of an 18-year-old man at a Nantucket resort, was dismissed by Massachusetts prosecutors in 2019.

— With files from Global News’ Kathryn Mannie 

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