More women have come forward with allegations of sexual abuse and harassment against the embattled CEO of CBS Corp., Les Moonves, as the company’s board continues to negotiate the terms of his departure.
In an article published by The New Yorker on Sunday, journalist Ronan Farrow details the allegations of six more women who claim Moonves forced them into unwanted sexual situations and allegedly retaliated when they refused.
One of the women who came forward is the veteran television executive Phyllis Golden-Gottlieb, who told Farrow that she filed a report with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), accusing Moonves of “physically restraining her and forcing her to perform oral sex on him, and of exposing himself to her and violently throwing her against a wall in later incidents.”
However, the encounter allegedly happened back in the 1980’s, meaning the statue of limitations has now passed. In a statement, Moonves responded to the allegations by claiming that all the mentioned incidences were consensual.
“The appalling accusations in this article are untrue,” Moonves said. “What is true is that I had consensual relations with three of the women some 25 years ago before I came to CBS. And I have never used my position to hinder the advancement or careers of women.”
“In my 40 years of work, I have never before heard of such disturbing accusations,” the CBS boss continued. “I can only surmise they are surfacing now for the first time, decades later, as part of a concerted effort by others to destroy my name, my reputation, and my career. Anyone who knows me knows that the person described in this article is not me.”
Moonves was first accused of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior by several women in another explosive New Yorker piece by Farrow in July, leading to an internal investigation into his conduct. The new round of allegations come as CBS is reportedly planning to offer Moonves around $100 million to exit the company he’s run for decades. The reported nine-figure “exit package, is said to be contingent on whether more accusers come forward.
CNBC reports that Moonves’ exit is imminent:
CBS‘ board of directors is near completion of a settlement that would both end its litigation with its controlling shareholder National Amusements — and sever ties with long time CEO Leslie Moonves, according to people familiar with the situation.