Les Moonves, CEO of CBS, Accused of Sexual Misconduct



CBS said on Friday it was investigating allegations of misconduct against its chief executive, Les Moonves, in a statement that came before the reportedly imminent publication of a New Yorker report.

Farrow details numerous allegations that have emerged against the men of CBS in the past year: sexual harassment allegations against Brad Kern, producer of NCIS: New Orleans, a lawsuit against an executive director at CBS Evening News who encouraged a staffer to have sex with a coworker, and of course, the many allegations against network star Charlie Rose.

The board is hiring an independent company to conduct the investigation.

Mr Moonves, 68, who is chairman and chief executive of CBS, has yet to respond to BBC requests for comment.

The specifics of the accusations against Moonves are not yet clear. He's credited with giving CBS a new lease on life with shows like the CSI franchise, Without a Trace, Survivor, NCIS, and Cold Case. Moonves wants a reunion to go forward under very specific conditions, including one in which he and his deputies would retain executive control of the combined unit. CBS sued REDSTONE to prevent her from attempting to take control by ousting directors or changing bylaws.

Moonves is accused of sexually harassing six women who had "professional dealings with him", between the 1980s and "the late aughts".

Other stories followed a similar path: a business meeting that Moonves leveraged into a potential sexual encounter.

CBS did not name Moonves but said it issued the statement Friday before the New Yorker article was published.

Les Moonves, CEO of CBS, Accused of Sexual Misconduct
Les Moonves, CEO of CBS, Accused of Sexual Misconduct

Veteran TV journalist Charlie Rose, 76, was sacked by CBS in November after being accused by more than 10 women of sexual misconduct.

Head of Weinstein Company Harvey Weinstein (L) and CBS Entertainment president Les Moonves attend a celebration of network television by the William Morris Agency at MoMA on May 12, 2008 in New York City.

According to Douglas' account, she was asked to meet Moonves in his office while she was working on a sitcom called "Queens", to be sure they were - as Farrow put it - "creatively aligned".

"I think there's still a lot we don't know about the investigation". CBS said its current "management team has the full support of the independent board members" in the ongoing litigation involving National Amusement.

Redstone strongly denied any involvement Friday.

Combining CBS, which owns cable networks including Showtime as well as the CBS TV Network and CBS TV Studios, with Viacom, whose businesses include Paramount Pictures, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and MTV, would have more negotiating leverage with cable and satellite companies, analysts said.

And the board's statement suggested it might not be a coincidence.

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