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

Kevin Spacey will “voluntarily” appear in the United Kingdom to face four new sexual assault charges that were brought against him last week. If Spacey does not voluntarily appear in the U.K., British authorities plan to seek the actor’s formal extradition from the U.S. Spacey can be formally charged only following his arrest in England or Wales.

The 62-year-old actor provided a statement to “Good Morning America” on Tuesday, in which he says he is “confident” he can prove his innocence: “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.”

The charges against Spacey in Britain were announced last Thursday by the U.K.’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), which has spent over a year reviewing a file passed to them by the Metropolitan Police. Rosemary Ainslie, head of the CPS Special Crime Division, said: “The CPS has authorized criminal charges against Kevin Spacey, 62, for four counts of sexual assault against three men. He has also been charged with causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent. The charges follow a review of the evidence gathered by the Metropolitan Police in its investigation. 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.”  Some of the charges are believed to stem from Spacey’s time at the Old Vic theater in London, where he served as artistic director from 2004-2015. Following multiple allegations of sexual assault against the actor in the U.S., the theater undertook an internal investigation which resulted in 20 victims coming forward who claimed he had behaved inappropriately toward them.

Editorial credit: Yannik Bikker / Shutterstock.com

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