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London jury seated in Kevin Spacey sex assault trial on allegations over a decade old

LONDON — (AP) — On Wednesday, jurors were sworn in at a London court to determine the outcome of actor Kevin Spacey’s trial on charges of sexually assaulting four men, some of which date back as far as two decades ago. The verdict of the trial holds the potential to send Spacey to prison or potentially revive his career.

Arriving at court in a dark blue suit, light blue shirt, and pink tie, the two-time Academy Award winner, Kevin Spacey, confidently entered the courtroom and responded to his full name when called. When asked if he was Kevin Spacey Fowler, he confirmed his identity by saying, “I am,” while standing behind a window in the dock.

Spacey, 63, has pleaded not guilty to twelve charges, including sexual assault, indecent assault, and causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent. As Justice Mark Wall addressed the potential jurors, he acknowledged that many of them would be familiar with Spacey’s name or have seen his films. Spacey nodded and smiled at the jurors and the journalists present in the courtroom, who were diligently taking notes.

The first fourteen jurors, including two alternates, were called by name and seated without objections from either the prosecution or defense. The remaining thirteen jurors were excused from the proceedings.

The jurors, comprising nine men and five women, dressed in a combination of business and casual attire. Two women wore dresses, while two men wore suits and ties. One man donned a black denim jacket, and another, with a beard, wore a worn-out Superman T-shirt stretched across his midsection.

Spacey stood with his hands clasped behind his back as the jurors were sworn in to hear evidence in the case, which is expected to last four weeks at Southwark Crown Court. Opening statements are scheduled for Friday.

Prior to the trial’s commencement, Spacey, who is out on bail and has residences in London and the U.S., arrived at court by taxi alongside his manager, Evan Lowenstein. As he passed photographers and video journalists, Spacey greeted them with smiles and waves.

Spacey has expressed that an acquittal in this case could potentially jump-start his career, which has largely been on hold since sexual misconduct allegations surfaced against him. In a rare interview published earlier this month in Germany’s Zeit magazine, Spacey mentioned that there are people ready to hire him once he is cleared of the charges in London, and he lamented being portrayed as a “monster” by the media.

The charges against Spacey involve men who are currently in their 30s or 40s and range from 2001 to 2013. This period covers most of the time when Spacey lived in Britain and served as the artistic director of the Old Vic Theatre until 2015.

Spacey’s downfall came amidst the #MeToo movement in the United States, which led to his removal from the Netflix series “House of Cards,” where he portrayed the lead character, Frank Underwood, a ruthless and corrupt congressman turned president. He was also replaced by Christopher Plummer in the completed film “All the Money in the World,” with scenes reshot to exclude Spacey.

During the 1990s, Spacey became one of the most celebrated actors of his generation, starring in films like “Glengarry Glen Ross” and “LA Confidential.” He won his second Oscar for Best Actor in the 1999 movie “American Beauty.”

Recently, Spacey made a return to the film industry with a role in Italian director Franco Nero’s “The Man Who Drew God” in 2022. He also portrayed the late Croatian President Franjo Tudjman in the biopic “Once Upon a Time in Croatia.” Additionally, Spacey stars in the yet-to-be-released

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