Re­port de­tails new al­le­ga­tions against for­mer CBS chief

San Francisco Chronicle - - OPINION -

A re­port by CBS lawyers out­lines more al­le­ga­tions of sex­ual mis­con­duct by long­time chief Les Moonves, The New York Times re­ported.

The re­port al­leges that Moonves de­stroyed ev­i­dence and mis­led in­ves­ti­ga­tors as he at­tempted to pro­tect his rep­u­ta­tion and sev­er­ance pay­ments. It says in­ves­ti­ga­tors had re­ceived “mul­ti­ple re­ports” about a net­work em­ployee who was “on call” to per­form oral sex on Moonves.

“A num­ber of em­ploy­ees were aware of this and be­lieved that the woman was pro­tected from dis­ci­pline or ter­mi­na­tion as a re­sult of it,” it cited the re­port as say­ing. “Moonves ad­mit­ted to re­ceiv­ing oral sex from the woman, his sub­or­di­nate, in his of­fice, but de­scribed it as con­sen­sual.”

It said, the woman did not re­spond to the in­ves­ti­ga­tors’ re­quests for an in­ter­view.

The re­port was pre­pared by lawyers the net­work hired to de­ter­mine if Moonves vi­o­lated the terms of his em­ploy­ment agree­ment, the news­pa­per re­ported Tues­day.

CBS de­clined to com­ment Wed­nes­day and lawyers for Moonves did not im­me­di­ately re­spond. Moonves had to quit in Septem­ber amid numer­ous al­le­ga­tions of sex­ual mis­be­hav­ior.

The 59-page re­port is to be pre­sented to CBS’s board of di­rec­tors be­fore the com­pany’s an­nual meet­ing next week, it said.

Moonves and CBS are still ne­go­ti­at­ing a $120 mil­lion pay­out as part of his salary, but the re­sults will be par­tially de­pen­dent on the out­come of an ex­ter­nal probe into his con­duct at the net­work. The lat­est re­port ap­pears to make the exit pack­age more un­likely.

As part of his con­tract with CBS he was re­quired to fully co­op­er­ate with the net­work’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Moonves stepped down fol­low­ing a story by the New Yorker that in­cluded a sec­ond round of ugly sex­ual mis­con­duct ac­cu­sa­tions against the pow­er­ful tele­vi­sion ex­ec­u­tive. He is one of many im­por­tant fig­ures in en­ter­tain­ment to be felled by sex­ual mis­con­duct al­le­ga­tions.

Chris Pizzello / As­so­ci­ated Press

Les Moonves quit as CBS chair­man and CEO in Septem­ber amid numer­ous al­le­ga­tions of sex­ual mis­be­hav­ior. A $120 mil­lion pay­out is at stake.

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