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Mario Batali's indecent assault case returns to court

FILE - In this May 24, 2019 file photo, chef Mario Batali departs after pleading not guilty, at municipal court in Boston, to an allegation that he forcibly kissed and groped a woman at a Boston restaurant in 2017. A hearing is scheduled, Friday, Aug. 30, 2019 in the indecent assault and battery case against Mario Batali.

BOSTON (AP) — A hearing has been held in the indecent assault and battery case against celebrity chef Mario Batali.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins said Batali didn't attend Friday's hearing at Boston Municipal Court and wasn't required to.

She also said no trial date was set. The case returns to court Sept. 4.

Batali pleaded not guilty in May to forcibly kissing and groping a woman at a Boston restaurant in 2017.

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His career crumbled in the wake of that and other accusations of sexual misconduct.

The accuser says Batali groped and kissed her repeatedly without her consent after he took a selfie with her. Batali's lawyer has said the charge is "without merit."

Earlier this month Eataly USA bought out Batali's minority interest in the Italian marketplace company.

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