- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 22, 2018

TMZ published text messages on Wednesday it claims Asia Argento sent that confirm she had sex with then 17-year-old actor Jimmy Bennett.

“I had sex with him it felt weird. I didn’t know he was a minor until the shakedown letter,” one of the messages read.

In the conversation, the party identified by TMZ as Ms. Argento said Mr. Bennett was a “horny kid” who “jumped me.” She accused him of sending “unsolicited nudes” for years leading up to the settlement.

“[I] wasn’t raped but I was frozen. He was on top of me. After he told me I had been his sexual fantasy since [he] was 12,” another text read.

TMZ did not specify who sent the text messages beyond describing them as “one of [Ms. Argento’s] friends.

Ms. Argento denied having a sexual relationship with Mr. Bennett in a statement to the Huffington Post on Tuesday.

“I am deeply shocked and hurt by having read news that is absolutely false,” she wrote.

On Sunday the New York Times reported that Ms. Argento arranged to pay $380,000 to Mr. Bennett in the months after she spoke out against Harvey Weinstein.

Ms. Argento said the only thing between her and Mr. Bennett was friendship, but that ended when the younger actor “unexpectedly made an exorbitant request of money from me.”

Ms. Argento suggested Mr. Bennett targeted her because of Mr. Bourdain’s fame.

“[Anthony Bourdain] insisted the matter be handled privately and this was also what Bennett wanted. Anthony was afraid of the possible negative publicity that such a person, whom he considered dangerous, could have brought upon us,” she wrote.

The Times received an encrypted and anonymous email with documents from both party’s lawyers about the payment.

The email alleged that in 2013 Mr. Bennett visited Ms. Argento in her hotel room as a minor, where they drank alcohol and had sex. It also included photos of the two in bed together.

The messages published on Wednesday appear to address the photo.

“You can see my t**s. That’s all. It doesn’t mean sh*t,” Ms. Argento allegedly wrote.

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