Asia Argento Fired from 'X Factor Italy' After Sexual Assault Allegations

Lysette Anthony says she is the victim of abuse rape and humiliation by producer Harvey Weinstein

Lysette Anthony says she is the victim of abuse rape and humiliation by producer Harvey Weinstein

The US actor who accuses Asia Argento of sexually assaulting him as a teenager said Wednesday that he had been too "ashamed and afraid" to speak publicly against the Italian actress and abuse campaigner.

News of Argento's firing comes shortly after she denied allegations from Bennett that she paid him $380,000 to keep quiet about an alleged sexual encounter they had while he was underage in California, where the legal age of consent is 18. Neither Argento nor the show's producers have yet commented on her removal.

The live portion of the show will officially begin with a new judge and the main cast from October 25. In an ironic twist, Variety reports that Argento's ex-husband, Italian pop singer Morgan, is her likely replacement. Argento said Bennett reached out knowing Bourdain was "a man of great perceived wealth" and that the late chef made a decision to handle the matter quietly.

A growing number of Italians had taken to social media demanding that Argento be pulled from the show. Sources say that Sky Italia does not want to penalize the 40,000 people who initially attended the casting for one of the final 12 coveted spots on the show. If they had scrapped Argento entirely they would have had to start the whole casting process from scratch. "It is worth noting that Ms. Argento, her lawyer and agent were contacted repeatedly and given four days to respond to the story".

Tributes pour in after death of USA senator John McCain
Earlier this summer, McCain issued a blistering statement criticising Trump's meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. McCain last visited the Naval Academy last October, when he had a strong final message for the Brigade of Midshipmen.

On Tuesday, Argento denied having a sexual relationship with Bennett, said the allegations were part of "a long-standing persecution" and that she was linked to Bennett "by friendship only".

Argento has since admitted to agreeing to the payout, which she has claimed was organised by her boyfriend, late chef Anthony Bourdain, but has denied having sex with Bennett, now 22.

Text messages which emerged this week allegedly revealed the actress had sex with her former co-star Jimmy Bennett, when she was 37 and the boy just 17.

If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit their website.

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