The proposed sale of The Weinstein Co is in question after New York’s attorney general filed a lawsuit saying that any deal would have to include assurances of financial compensation for women allegedly abused by co-founder Harvey Weinstein.

The lawsuit accused the producer of “repeatedly and persistently” sexually harassing female workers in violation of state law.

The attorney general’s office said the action was filed partly due to reports of the movie company’s imminent sale to an investment group led by Maria Contreras-Sweet.

She was the chief administrator of the Small Business Administration under former US president Barack Obama.

Weinstein has repeatedly denied all accusations of non-consensual sex.

His New York attorney released a statement saying many of the allegations against his client are “without merit”.