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

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

Former Fox News commentator Bill O'Reilly was handed a new contract in January, despite the network's parent company knowing he had recently settled a sexual harassment case. This article, like our previous reporting on the subject, is accurate and deeply reported and we welcome any challenge to the facts.

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

It was already shocking when Fox News made a decision to dump its top-rated host Bill O'Reilly, after mounting revelations of sexual harassment and multi-million dollar settlements, earlier this year.

Mr. O'Reilly told The New York Times that he had been receiving threatening messages during his time at Fox News and was forwarding some of the material to Ms. Wiehl since she was one of his attorneys, according to the report. Later that month her lawyers and the company's legal team worked out the settlement and she agreed not to sue.

[F] ederal prosecutors who had been investigating the network's handling of sexual harassment complaints against Mr. Ailes had asked for material related to allegations involving Mr. O'Reilly, according to an internal Fox email obtained by The Times. 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".

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.

Mr. O'Reilly learned on January 2 that Ms. Wiehl meant to sue him for sexual harassment, according to The New York Times report.

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. O'Reilly hasn't exactly been exiled from Fox News either - he recently appeared on Sean Hannity's show, where he lamented not fighting harder to keep his job.

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