Serious new allegations against CBS chief amid departure talks

Sep 11, 2018, 02:14
Serious new allegations against CBS chief amid departure talks

On Sunday, The New Yorker published another damaging #MeToo investigative piece by Ronan Farrow - the reporter who helped break the Harvey Weinstein story - detailing the allegations of six more women who are accusing Moonves of sexual misconduct, a follow-up to Farrow's previous report presenting the accusations of six other women against the CEO.

Embattled CBS Corp. chief executive Leslie Moonves is facing new allegations of sexual misconduct, amid news reports that he will soon step down following previous accusations.

Another six women had accused Mr Moonves.

Two articles published by The New Yorker - on July 27 and on the day that his departure was announced - detailed allegations against the 68-year-old television titan from 12 different women. "I think it's important that a company's culture will not allow for this".

Moonves is one of the media world's highest paid CEOs, so his severance package would normally be generous, even gargantuan.

As part of the agreement, Moonves and CBS will donate $20 million to one or more organizations that support the.MeToo movement and equality for women in the workplace.

Any payments made to Moonves in the future will depend upon the results of the independent investigation and subsequent board of directors evaluation. Moonves actually pushed the CBS board to dilute its stock to enable them to oust the Redstones as controlling shareholders. But CBS News reported Monday that Moonves severance package was about $80 million.

"We're about to talk about something that affects everybody's life here at CBS", she started.

Co-host Julie Chen, Moonves' wife, was notably absent from the live show on Monday, saying in a statement that she was "taking a few days off" to be with family.

The board of directors told the New Yorker it was "committed to a thorough and independent investigation of the allegations, and that investigation is actively under way".

Moonves has categorically denied forcing himself onto any of the women.

In addition to the six accusers named in the story, Farrow reports that massage therapists at Washington's Four Seasons hotel in D.C. complained of sexual misconduct by Moonves in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Moonves said in a statement late on Sunday that "untrue allegations from decades ago are now being made against me that are not consistent with who I am".

Entertainment President Kelly Kahl told reporters last month that the environment is safe for women.

Mr Moonves has been one of the most powerful executives in U.S. media, joining CBS in 1995 as head of entertainment and becoming CEO of CBS Corp in 2006. The network is also investigating Jeff Fager, former CBS News chairman and executive producer of "60 Minutes", on charges that he condoned a hostile atmosphere to women.

Phyllis Golden-Gottlieb, 82, is among the women whose fresh claims against Moonves led to his resignation as CEO of CBS on Sunday. Much of Moonves' tenure at CBS has been marked by a power struggle with Redstone over her plan to merge CBS and Viacom.

Whether that success would continue under Ianniello, a low-profile figure, remains to be seen. Currently, the TV divisions and film divisions operate under two separate companies: CBS and Paramount. For people who were at home watching, it was just a simple accident, but behind the scenes, it landed CBS a $550,000 Federal Communications Commission fine.

"Without its long-standing leader, CBS is doomed", he said, noting that "who else is strong enough, either in management or on the board, or has sufficient institutional backing to stand up to Shari?"

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