Life&Culture

Gretchen Carlson: 'Horrifying' that Fox would let O'Reilly back on air

Gretchen Carlson: 'Horrifying' that Fox would let O'Reilly back on air

The Times reports that the newly disclosed case centered around O'Reilly and Lis Wiehl, a former Fox legal analyst who occasionally appeared on his television and radio shows.

During an interview with the Times on Wednesday, O'Reilly said, "I never mistreated anyone ..."

Fox News parent company 21st Century Fox renewed Bill O'Reilly's contract in February even though company officials knew he'd settled a sexual harassment claim for $32 million the previous month, The New York Times reports.

Mr. O'Reilly struck the $32 million deal with Fox News analyst Lis Wiehl in January, two people told The Times - about six months after Fox News ousted its former chairman over separate allegations of sexual harassment, and a month before 21st Century Fox upped Mr. O'Reilly's annual salary from about $18 million to $25 million.

"His new contract, which was made at a time typical for renewals of multi-year talent contracts, added protections for the company specifically aimed at harassment, including that O'Reilly could be dismissed if the company was made aware of other allegations or if additional relevant information was obtained in a company investigation".

O'Reilly reportedly settled a $32 million lawsuit, which the network was aware of when it resigned him earlier this year.

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Duke and Duchess of Cambridge expecting third child in April
Britain's Prince William and his wife Catherine have revealed that their third child is due in April next year. Either way, the new arrival will be fifth in line to throne, bumping uncle Prince Harry down to sixth.


As part of the settlement, Wiehl agreed to destroy messages and photos from O'Reilly that could back up her complaints, and to keep silent on the issue, the newspaper reported.

Wiehl accused O'Reilly of harassment and "a nonconsensual sexual relationship", according to the Times, which cited unnamed sources briefed on the settlement.

Given the attention that Fox News hosts have paid to the Weinstein story, it will be interesting to see whether O'Reilly's massive settlement receives much, or any, coverage from the network's primetime opinionators and moralists.

However, the Times says that while Wiehl signed an agreement to say she had no claims against O'Reilly-and that all emails between her and O'Reilly were under her capacity as his lawyer-this was only after the settlement was made. O'Reilly was sacked in April over initial reports of his settlements with five women over similar allegations.

At the time, Fox News was trying to overcome negative press from the scandal surrounding the network's founder and CEO Roger Ailes.


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