Close  

Stalking defendant says he wanted Paltrow to forgive him

/ 10:14 AM February 12, 2016
Gwyneth Paltrow

In this Oct. 29, 2015 file photo, Gwyneth Paltrow arrives at the amfAR Inspiration Gala in Los Angeles. Dante Soiu, an Ohio man charged with stalking Paltrow by sending her dozens of messages and unsolicited gifts between 2009 and 2015, testified in his own defense about the correspondence at his trial in Los Angeles Superior Court on Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. AP FILE PHOTO

LOS ANGELES — A man charged with stalking Gwyneth Paltrow told jurors Thursday that he kept writing to the actress in recent years because he wanted her forgiveness for sending her pornographic messages nearly 17 years ago.

Dante Soiu was one of the final witnesses at his four-day trial focusing on packages and letters — some of which expressed his desire to marry Paltrow — sent in 2014 and 2015.

ADVERTISEMENT

Soiu, 66, testified that he never intended to scare Paltrow or physically harm her.

“I have no desire to hurt her feelings,” Soiu said. “I have no desire to harass her.”

A prosecutor however urged jurors to disregard his statements and instead view Soiu as a calculating, crazy stalker who would never stop harassing Paltrow.

“It’s a compulsion and an obsession to insert himself into her life,” Deputy District Attorney Wendy Segall said in closing arguments.

She told jurors that the case actually got Soiu what he wanted — to spend time with Paltrow, who testified against him on Monday.

“He gets to spend hours in a room with the object of his desire,” Segall said. “This is not a stupid man. This is actually a highly intelligent man.”

READ: Accused Gwyneth Paltrow stalker discusses desire to marry actress

Soiu told jurors that he was lonely and wanted a pen pal and kept writing to the Oscar winner despite the previous stalking case involving the actress that led to him being sent to a mental institution for several years.

Prosecutors say Soiu sent 66 messages to Paltrow between 2009 and 2015 before he was arrested.

ADVERTISEMENT

Soiu’s attorney Lynda Westlund has said her client was merely trying to minister to Paltrow in the latest messages and she misinterpreted his biblical messages.

The actress testified Monday that she was scared of Soiu and broke down when a prosecutor asked if she was afraid for the safety of her children.

Soiu testified Wednesday that he wrote to a variety of public figures, including President Barack Obama, Angelina Jolie and Vladmir Putin, but Paltrow was the only one he wanted to marry.

He previously tried to meet Paltrow in 1999 and 2000 after sending her the pornographic messages and sex toys.

Paltrow, 43, won an Oscar in 1999 for her role in “Shakespeare in Love.” She has two children with estranged husband Chris Martin, front man of the band Coldplay.

READ: Gwyneth Paltrow tearfully testifies against accused stalker

Read Next
LATEST STORIES
MOST READ
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: forgiveness, Gwyneth Paltrow, jury, stalker
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2019 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.