LONDON—Two-time Oscar-winning actor, Kevin Spacey, has been acquitted on nine charges of sexual assault involving four men, in London’s Southwark Crown courtroom on Wednesday, July 26. The jury – made up of nine men and three women – took twelve hours to reach a verdict, which came on the actor’s birthday – he is 64-years-old. 

Spacey reportedly cried as the verdict was read aloud and hugged his manager and legal team afterwards. He was acquitted on multiple counts of sexual assault and one count of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent. 

“I imagine that many of you can understand that there’s a lot for me to process after what has just happened today,” Spacey told a group of press outside of the courtroom. “But I would like to say that I’m enormously grateful to the jury for having taken the time to examine all of the evidence and all of the facts, carefully, before they reached their decision,” he continued. “I am humbled by the outcome of today.”

Allegations against Spacey began to surface back in 2017 during the emergence of the #MeToo Movement. The first trial against him was brought about by actor Anthony Rapp, who filed a $40 million lawsuit in Manhattan claiming Spacey made an unwanted sexual advance towards him when he was 14-years-old in 1986. 

Spacey was subsequently fired from his role in the TV show “House of Cards” and his scenes from the movie “All The Money In the World” were taken out and he was replaced by actor Christopher Plummer. Spacey was “canceled” in Hollywood and unable to work as an actor for over six years.

In the fall of 2022, the federal jury in Manhattan found Spacey not guilty.  

Now in this second trial, the London jury heard from four accusers – over the course of a month-long trial – who claimed that Spacey sexually assaulted them in separate incidents that occurred between 2001 and 2013. Spacey was the artistic director of the Old Vic Theater, a major playhouse in London, during that time. 

Three of the defendants accused Spacey of forcefully grabbing their crotches. The fourth defendant said he awoke in Spacey’s London apartment after a party, to Spacey performing oral sex on him. 

One defendant who worked as Spacey’s driver for years, said that Spacey groped him numerous times. One time in particular, Spacey allegedly grabbed him so hard while he was driving to Elton John’s “White Tie & Tiara Ball,” that he almost ran off the road. 

Elton John and his husband, David Furnish, testified by video and provided a timeline that cast doubt on the driver’s accusations. According to John and Furnish, the only time Spacey attended the party was in 2001, several years before the accusation was said to have occurred.

Spacey denied all of the accusations and admitted to the jury that he was a “big flirt” that had consensual encounters with men. He described the allegations against him as a “stab in the back” and that being “promiscuous does not make [him] a bad person.”

Now that he’s been cleared of all allegations, Spacey has plans to make a comeback. Last month, he told German Magazine Zeit that there were “people right now who are ready to hire me the moment I am cleared of these charges in London.”