Published: Wed, October 25, 2017
Entertaiment | By Simon Arnold

O'Reilly Struck $32M Settlement In January Over Harassment Allegations

O'Reilly Struck $32M Settlement In January Over Harassment Allegations

Saturday saw a new investigative report from the New York Times, which provided details of a sixth settlement (paid by O'Reilly) for the astronomical sum of $32 million to accuser Lis Wiehl.

The latest woman to accuse O'Reilly is Lis Wiehl, who had been a legal analyst for the network for 15 years. 21st Century Fox was aware of these complaints, the Times reported, but still renewed his contract in February for $25 million a year.

He made suggestive remarks to her on the air for years afterward, such as recommending that she dance at a strip club, and her other complains against O'Reilly "included allegations of repeated harassment, a nonconsensual sexual relationship and the sending of gay pornography and other sexually explicit material to her, according to the people briefed on the matter", the Times reports.

O'Reilly, host of The O'Reilly Factor, was ousted from the news channel in April amid reports he'd settled multiple suits to the tune of $13 million.

As other accusations swirled around FNC before, during and since, O'Reilly was finally canned after it was revealed that over $10 million had been paid out to settle other sexual harassment claims against him.

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

O'Reilly has not admitted to any wrongdoing, claiming the allegations were "politically and financially motivated".

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.

In response to a New York Times story published Saturday, 21st Century Fox says it knew of the settlement but not the monetary amount.

Fox News is already under investigation by the US Department of Justice for its handling of harassment complaints, and the new reporting by the Times raises questions about the Murdochs' handling of their company. Writing on the ties between O'Reilly and Weinstein, the Times's Jim Rutenberg notes that, "a full, public airing did not come to be until those meddling reporters came along". 'It's done as a way to put a hammer over the individual who signs so they will never come forward and disclose the allegations, ' she said.

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