Linda Evangelista praises 'courage' of women accusing ex-husband of sexual assault: 'I believe that they are telling the truth'

Supermodel Linda Evangelista supports four women who accuse their ex-husband Gérald Marie of sexual assault and rape. (Photo: VALERY HACHE / AFP via Getty Images)
Supermodel Linda Evangelista supports a group of women who accuse ex-husband Gérald Marie of rape and sexual misconduct.
On Friday, the 55-year-old icon told The Guardian Weekend that women who accused the former president of Elite Model Management in a September 21 complaint before the Paris Judicial Court had "courage" to take a step forward.
"During my relationship with Gérald Marie, I didn't know about these sexual allegations against him, so I couldn't help these women," Evangelista told her ex-husband, to whom she was married from 1987 to 1993.
"As I hear you now, and based on my own experience, I believe you are telling the truth," she continued. "It breaks my heart because these are wounds that will never heal, and I admire your courage and strength to speak today." On Saturday Evangelista posted an Instagram photo that said, "When fear equals silence".
Gerald Marie and Linda Evangelista (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
In September, the 70-year-old businessman, now chairman of Oui Management, was charged with rape and sexual assault by three models (Carré Sutton, 51), Jill Dodd (60) and Ebba Karlsson (51)) and a journalist (Lisa Brinkworth) , 53), incidents which, according to the New York Times, allegedly occurred in the 1980s and 1990s.
The outlet reports that the allegations are outside the French statute of limitations. However, a claim with new evidence could be an exception. In September, Marie told the Sunday Times of London that he had "categorically" denied the allegations and that his lawyers had told The Guardian: "He intends to be an active part of the truth-clarification as part of the ongoing criminal investigation."
The Guardian states that Evangelista was dating Marie at the time of the alleged incidents and the women's claims do not suggest that their crime was known. A secondary article published on Saturday contained information from a total of eight women.
On Saturday, Sutton, mostly known by her professional name, Carrie Otis, wrote on Instagram: “I am grateful that this issue is being acknowledged, but we have a long way to go in seeking justice. It was incredibly troubling to me and other survivors that our words and wounds fell on deaf ears. For too many years. I encourage women to speak up now. We're numerically safer. "
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