21st Century Fox in $90 million settlement tied to sexual harassment scandal, Representative Conyers Sexual Harassment Charges
November 22, 2017 Comments Off on 21st Century Fox in $90 million settlement tied to sexual harassment scandal, Representative Conyers Sexual Harassment Charges
– 21st Century Fox in $90 million settlement tied to sexual harassment scandal
– Democrats Move Swiftly Against Conyers Amid Latest Harassment Charges
21st Century Fox in $90 million settlement tied to sexual harassment scandal
Jonathan Stempel November 20, 2017
(Reuters) – Twenty-First Century Fox Inc has reached a $90 million settlement of shareholder claims arising from the sexual harassment scandal at its Fox News Channel, which cost the jobs of longtime news chief Roger Ailes and anchor Bill O‘Reilly.
The settlement, which requires a judge’s approval, resolves what are known as “derivative” claims against Fox officers and directors, including: Rupert Murdoch and his son Lachlan, who are Fox’s executive chairmen; James Murdoch, another son and its chief executive, and Ailes’ estate.
The defendants did not admit wrongdoing in agreeing to the settlement filed with the Delaware Chancery Court.
Monday’s settlement calls for insurers of Fox officers, Fox directors and Ailes’ estate to pay the $90 million to the New York-based company for the benefit of shareholders.
Fox will enhance governance and said it created the Fox News Workplace Professionalism and Inclusion Council to ensure a proper workplace environment, bolster training and further the recruitment and advancement of women and minorities….
The scandal at Fox began in July 2016 when former anchor Gretchen Carlson filed a lawsuit accusing Ailes of harassment. O‘Reilly lost his job in April after being accused of harassment, and has denied wrongdoing.
Ailes died the next month. Fox faces other private civil litigation tied to the scandal.
The case is City of Monroe Employees’ Retirement System v Murdoch et al, Delaware Chancery Court, No. 2017-0833.
Democrats Move Swiftly Against Conyers Amid Latest Harassment Charges
By YAMICHE ALCINDOR, NICHOLAS FANDOS and JONATHAN MARTIN NOV. 21, 2017
Representative John Conyers Jr., Democrat of Michigan, entered the House in 1965 and has led the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee for decades.
WASHINGTON — Representative Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader, moved swiftly on Tuesday against the House’s longest-serving lawmaker, calling for the House Ethics Committee to investigate sexual harassment charges against Representative John Conyers Jr., the top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee.
Mr. Conyers, 88, who has represented parts of the Detroit area in the House since 1965, confirmed the settlement of a wrongful termination complaint in 2015 from a staff member who had accused him of sexual harassment. But he denied that the staff member was fired for refusing to have sex with him. The settlement was first reported by BuzzFeed News on Monday….
Mr. Conyers denied any wrongdoing and said the money paid to his accuser amounted to a “reasonable severance payment.”
But legal documents published by BuzzFeed show repeated allegations by female staff members of requests for sex, suggestive touching, caresses and other sexual improprieties. On Tuesday evening, BuzzFeed wrote about a separate lawsuit against Mr. Conyers filed in February in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, later withdrawn after the court denied the accuser’s motion to seal the proceedings.
In the suit, a former scheduler for Mr. Conyers said she suffered through unwanted touching and romantic advances “repeatedly and daily” in 2015 and 2016.
The calls for an investigation came as Democrats privately raised the prospect that Mr. Conyers would at least be asked to step aside from the coveted top Judiciary post. Mr. Conyers, a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus, also holds the venerated title of Dean of the House. But he has been a target of Democrats who are eager to bring fresh blood into the Judiciary Committee leadership for some time, three congressional officials said….
According to the documents obtained by BuzzFeed, a former staff member said she was fired because she would not succumb to Mr. Conyers’s “sexual advances.” The publication also obtained affidavits from other staff members who said Mr. Conyers repeatedly harassed women working for him through actions that included requests for sexual acts, contacting and transporting other women with whom they believed Mr. Conyers was having affairs, caressing their hands sexually and rubbing their legs and backs in public….
Corey Feldman childhood sexual abuse, Harvey Weinstein sex scandal “company was negligent,” Bill O’Reilly Got Raise After Secret Payout
October 26, 2017 Comments Off on Corey Feldman childhood sexual abuse, Harvey Weinstein sex scandal “company was negligent,” Bill O’Reilly Got Raise After Secret Payout
– Corey Feldman, an alleged victim of childhood sexual abuse, says he is ready to come forward – but not quite yet
– As Harvey Weinstein sex scandal grows, one accuser says his company was negligent
– Fresh Headache For Murdochs: Bill O’Reilly Got Raise After Secret Payout
Corey Feldman, an alleged victim of childhood sexual abuse, says he is ready to come forward — but not quite yet
By Stephanie Merry October 25
Long before a tidal wave of women came forward with allegations against Harvey Weinstein, Corey Feldman was sounding the alarm about Hollywood sexual abuse. In his 2013 memoir “Coreyography,” he detailed how, when he and his friend and co-star Corey Haim were the biggest child stars of the 1980s, they were allegedly sexually assaulted by men in the industry. According to Feldman, Haim was raped when he was 11. —
The “Lost Boys” star never revealed the names of the men allegedly responsible, however, and since the dam broke on the Weinstein story, the actor-turned-musician has come under tremendous pressure on social media to expose the guilty parties….
In an emotional video he posted to Twitter on Wednesday, Feldman said he wants to make a movie about his experience.
It will be the “most honest and true depiction of child abuse ever portrayed,” he said. He plans to direct, produce and self-distribute it — “with your donations.” He started an Indiegogo campaign for $10 million that will be used for a legal team and security for him and his family, he said, plus funds to create the film.
“Right off the bat I can name six names,” Feldman promised, “one of them who’s still very powerful today.” He also said he can show a link between pedophilia and one of the major studios.
He’s hoping to bring down a pedophile ring with the movie, not to mention revolutionize the film industry, making it safer for child actors….
“Justice will be served,” he promised. “Because this is about good and evil.”
As Harvey Weinstein sex scandal grows, one accuser says his company was negligent
ByVictoria Kim, Victoria Kim and Stephen Battaglio October 25, 2017
As the sex abuse scandal involving Harvey Weinstein expands daily, a lingering question is: What did his company know about his alleged history of mistreating women?
In the last two days, three more women have accused Weinstein of forced sex acts. Actress Natassia Malthe on Wednesday accused him of raping her at the Sanderson Hotel in London in February 2008. On Tuesday, actress Dominique Huett and former production assistant Mimi Haleyi came forward with additional assault allegations against Weinstein.
The board of directors at Weinstein Co. has said they are “shocked and dismayed” by the accusations of sexual assault and misconduct by the mini-studio’s co-founder. Weinstein’s brother, Bob, and an anonymous group of employees have said they were ignorant of their former co-chairman’s alleged conduct.
But Huett says the company knew about the executive’s bad behavior and failed to protect women who came into his orbit. Her lawsuit, the first civil case against the company since the allegations went public, said the studio and its board were “aware of Weinstein’s pattern of using his power to coerce” actresses into sexual acts.
Huett alleged in her lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, that Weinstein lured her into a Beverly Hills hotel for a meeting about her career in 2010 and made unwanted sexual contact. The lawsuit is seeking millions of dollars in damages, including punitive damages and money to cover the costs of medical and psychological care.
Female Weinstein employees were used as “honeypots” to lure victims into meetings under the pretense of normal business, giving them a false sense of security, the suit alleges. Weinstein would then dismiss the so-called honeypot employees, leaving him alone with the victim, an act of trickery detailed in the New Yorker article that first brought sexual assault allegations to light….
A spokeswoman for Weinstein has said that “allegations of nonconsensual sex are unequivocally denied.”….
“We allege the Weinstein Company knew that Harvey Weinstein … was using his position…to bring young, aspiring actresses into vulnerable places where he would then prey on them,” he said….
In all, more than 50 women have accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct. The latest victim, Malthe, a Norwegian-born actress, told reporters on Wednesday that Weinstein barged into her London hotel room in 2008, suggesting that he would offer her a part in an upcoming film if she would sleep with him.
Malthe said that after she told him she was not interested, Weinstein pushed her back and raped her. “I laid still and closed my eyes and just wanted it to end,” she said at a news conference in New York. “I was like a dead person. Afterwards I lay there in complete disgust.”….
Fresh Headache For Murdochs: Bill O’Reilly Got Raise After Secret Payout
October 23, 2017 David Folkenflik
Bill O’Reilly wants you to know it’s all lies, driven by ideology, personal animus and professional jealousy.
Since The New York Times reported this weekend that he had agreed to a $32 million settlement to silence a longtime colleague’s accusations of sexual harassment back in January, O’Reilly has been brawling to defend his already deeply tarnished reputation.
O’Reilly’s former bosses at Fox News and parent company 21st Century — and especially for the Murdoch family that controls both — are fighting to contain fallout on multiple fronts. The Murdochs signed O’Reilly to a contract extension a month after their star host agreed to the secret payout — and despite knowing of at least four earlier instances in which he settled with women over sexual harassment dating back to 2004.
“Nobody pays $32 million to anybody for false accusations,” former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson told HLN.
“It’s shocking and it’s disturbing,” former Fox News host Megyn Kelly said on her new NBC Today show program.
All three Murdochs — Rupert and his sons Lachlan and James — have made pledges to reform the culture of Fox News. The late Roger Ailes, the propulsive force behind Fox News, was bought out as chairman last year after Carlson, Kelly and others accused him of sexual harassment. A host of network executives were forced out over the ensuing year for their ties to Ailes and perceptions they had enabled abusive behavior. The Murdochs paid O’Reilly $20 million to leave in the spring after several previously unknown settlements with women came to light. The network also forced out host Eric Bolling.
And yet Kelly devoted the opening minutes of her Monday morning show to an extended argument that Fox had not done enough.
On her show, Kelly just about set out a roadmap for prosecutors, arguing Fox had betrayed a pattern of hiding allegations through payments and threats, and retribution against those women who spoke up. “This has to stop,” Kelly said on NBC. “The abuse of women, the shaming them, the threatening, the retaliation, the silencing of them after the fact.” ….
Regulators are now assessing more broadly the family’s leadership. The Murdochs rewarded O’Reilly with a new contract and a raise after learning of the Wiehl settlement. That suggests the Murdochs were willing to give O’Reilly a sixth chance on sexual harassment, just six months after ousting their chairman for the same transgression.
October 11, 2017 Comments Off on Harvey Weinstein Paid Off Sexual Harassment Accusers for Decades
– . A longtime Democratic donor, he hosted a fund-raiser for Hillary Clinton in his Manhattan home last year. He employed Malia Obama, the oldest daughter of former President Barack Obama, as an intern this year
– At Fox News, where the conservative icons Roger E. Ailes and Bill O’Reilly were accused of harassment, women have received payouts well into the millions of dollars. But most of the women involved in the Weinstein agreements collected between roughly $80,000 and $150,000, according to people familiar with the negotiations.
– It’s likely that women have recently felt increasingly emboldened to talk about their experiences because of the way the world has changed regarding issues of sex and power. These disclosures follow in the wake of stories alleging sexual misconduct by public figures, including Bill O’Reilly, Roger Ailes, Bill Cosby, and Donald Trump. In October, 2016, a month before the election, a tape emerged of Trump telling a celebrity-news reporter, “And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. . . . Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.” This past April, O’Reilly, a host at Fox News, was forced to resign after Fox was discovered to have paid five women millions of dollars in exchange for silence about their accusations of sexual harassment. Ailes, the former head of Fox News, resigned last July, after he was accused of sexual harassment. Cosby went on trial this summer, charged with drugging and sexually assaulting a woman. The trial ended with a hung jury….
– Many expressed guilt and regret about not having said or done more. They spoke about what they believed to be a culture of silence about sexual assault inside Miramax and the Weinstein Company and across the entertainment industry more broadly.
– Top Actresses Who Have Accused Harvey Weinstein of Sexual Harassment
Harvey Weinstein Paid Off Sexual Harassment Accusers for Decades
By JODI KANTOR and MEGAN TWOHEY OCT. 5, 2017
Update: The Weinstein Company’s board has fired Harvey Weinstein after reports of sexual harassment complaints against him….
“There is a toxic environment for women at this company,” Ms. O’Connor said in the letter, addressed to several executives at the company run by Mr. Weinstein.
An investigation by The New York Times found previously undisclosed allegations against Mr. Weinstein stretching over nearly three decades, documented through interviews with current and former employees and film industry workers, as well as legal records, emails and internal documents from the businesses he has run, Miramax and the Weinstein Company.
During that time, after being confronted with allegations including sexual harassment and unwanted physical contact, Mr. Weinstein has reached at least eight settlements with women, according to two company officials speaking on the condition of anonymity. Among the recipients, The Times found, were a young assistant in New York in 1990, an actress in 1997, an assistant in London in 1998, an Italian model in 2015 and Ms. O’Connor shortly after, according to records and those familiar with the agreements.
In a statement to The Times on Thursday afternoon, Mr. Weinstein said: “I appreciate the way I’ve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it. Though I’m trying to do better, I know I have a long way to go.”
He added that he was working with therapists and planning to take a leave of absence to “deal with this issue head on.”….
Though Ms. O’Connor had been writing only about a two-year period, her memo echoed other women’s complaints. Mr. Weinstein required her to have casting discussions with aspiring actresses after they had private appointments in his hotel room, she said, her description matching those of other former employees. She suspected that she and other female Weinstein employees, she wrote, were being used to facilitate liaisons with “vulnerable women who hope he will get them work.”
The allegations piled up even as Mr. Weinstein helped define popular culture. He has collected six best-picture Oscars and turned out a number of touchstones, from the films “Sex, Lies, and Videotape,” “Pulp Fiction” and “Good Will Hunting” to the television show “Project Runway.” In public, he presents himself as a liberal lion, a champion of women and a winner of not just artistic but humanitarian awards….
In 2015, the year Ms. O’Connor wrote her memo, his company distributed “The Hunting Ground,” a documentary about campus sexual assault. A longtime Democratic donor, he hosted a fund-raiser for Hillary Clinton in his Manhattan home last year. He employed Malia Obama, the oldest daughter of former President Barack Obama, as an intern this year, and recently helped endow a faculty chair at Rutgers University in Gloria Steinem’s name. During the Sundance Film Festival in January, when Park City, Utah, held its version of nationwide women’s marches, Mr. Weinstein joined the parade….
Dozens of Mr. Weinstein’s former and current employees, from assistants to top executives, said they knew of inappropriate conduct while they worked for him. Only a handful said they ever confronted him.
Mr. Weinstein enforced a code of silence; employees of the Weinstein Company have contracts saying they will not criticize it or its leaders in a way that could harm its “business reputation” or “any employee’s personal reputation,” a recent document shows. And most of the women accepting payouts agreed to confidentiality clauses prohibiting them from speaking about the deals or the events that led to them.
Charles Harder, a lawyer representing Mr. Weinstein, said it was not unusual to enter into settlements to avoid lengthy and costly litigation. He added, “It’s not evidence of anything.”….
I am a professional and have tried to be professional. I am not treated that way however. I am sexualized and diminished.
— From Lauren O’Connor‘s memo
At Fox News, where the conservative icons Roger E. Ailes and Bill O’Reilly were accused of harassment, women have received payouts well into the millions of dollars. But most of the women involved in the Weinstein agreements collected between roughly $80,000 and $150,000, according to people familiar with the negotiations.
In the wake of Ms. O’Connor’s 2015 memo, some Weinstein Company board members and executives, including Mr. Weinstein’s brother and longtime partner, Bob, 62, were alarmed about the allegations, according to several people who spoke on the condition of anonymity. In the end, though, board members were assured there was no need to investigate. After reaching a settlement with Mr. Weinstein, Ms. O’Connor withdrew her complaint and thanked him for the career opportunity he had given her….
In interviews, eight women described varying behavior by Mr. Weinstein: appearing nearly or fully naked in front of them, requiring them to be present while he bathed or repeatedly asking for a massage or initiating one himself. The women, typically in their early or middle 20s and hoping to get a toehold in the film industry, said he could switch course quickly — meetings and clipboards one moment, intimate comments the next….
Most women who told The Times that they experienced misconduct by Mr. Weinstein had never met one another. They range in age from early 20s to late 40s and live in different cities. Some said they did not report the behavior because there were no witnesses and they feared retaliation by Mr. Weinstein. Others said they felt embarrassed. But most confided in co-workers….
From Aggressive Overtures to Sexual Assault: Harvey Weinstein’s Accusers Tell Their Stories
Multiple women share harrowing accounts of sexual assault and harassment by the film executive.
By Ronan Farrow October 10, 2017
In the course of a ten-month investigation, thirteen women interviewed said that, between the nineteen-nineties and 2015, Weinstein sexually harassed or assaulted them….
Since the establishment of the first studios a century ago, there have been few movie executives as dominant, or as domineering, as Harvey Weinstein. As the co-founder of the production-and-distribution companies Miramax and the Weinstein Company, he helped to reinvent the model for independent films, with movies such as “Sex, Lies, and Videotape,” “The English Patient,” “Pulp Fiction,” “The Crying Game,” “Shakespeare in Love,” and “The King’s Speech.” Beyond Hollywood, he has exercised his influence as a prolific fund-raiser for Democratic Party candidates, including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Weinstein combined a keen eye for promising scripts, directors, and actors with a bullying, even threatening, style of doing business, inspiring both fear and gratitude. His movies have earned more than three hundred Oscar nominations, and, at the annual awards ceremonies, he has been thanked more than almost anyone else in movie history, just after Steven Spielberg and right before God.
For more than twenty years, Weinstein has also been trailed by rumors of sexual harassment and assault. This has been an open secret to many in Hollywood and beyond, but previous attempts by many publications, including The New Yorker, to investigate and publish the story over the years fell short of the demands of journalistic evidence. Too few people were willing to speak, much less allow a reporter to use their names, and Weinstein and his associates used nondisclosure agreements, monetary payoffs, and legal threats to suppress these myriad stories. Asia Argento, an Italian film actress and director, told me that she did not speak out until now—Weinstein, she told me, forcibly performed oral sex on her—because she feared that Weinstein would “crush” her. “I know he has crushed a lot of people before,” Argento said. “That’s why this story—in my case, it’s twenty years old; some of them are older—has never come out.”
Last week, the New York Times, in a powerful report by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, revealed multiple allegations of sexual harassment against Weinstein, a story that led to the resignation of four members of his company’s all-male board, and to Weinstein’s firing from the company….
Three women—among them Argento and a former aspiring actress named Lucia Evans—told me that Weinstein raped them, allegations that include Weinstein forcibly performing or receiving oral sex and forcing vaginal sex. Four women said that they experienced unwanted touching that could be classified as an assault. In an audio recording captured during a New York Police Department sting operation in 2015 and made public here for the first time, Weinstein admits to groping a Filipina-Italian model named Ambra Battilana Gutierrez, describing it as behavior he is “used to.” Four of the women I interviewed cited encounters in which Weinstein exposed himself or masturbated in front of them….
Other employees described what was, in essence, a culture of complicity at Weinstein’s places of business, with numerous people throughout the companies fully aware of his behavior but either abetting it or looking the other way. Some employees said that they were enlisted in subterfuge to make the victims feel safe. A female executive with the company described how Weinstein assistants and others served as a “honeypot”—they would initially join a meeting, but then Weinstein would dismiss them, leaving him alone with the woman….
It’s likely that women have recently felt increasingly emboldened to talk about their experiences because of the way the world has changed regarding issues of sex and power. These disclosures follow in the wake of stories alleging sexual misconduct by public figures, including Bill O’Reilly, Roger Ailes, Bill Cosby, and Donald Trump. In October, 2016, a month before the election, a tape emerged of Trump telling a celebrity-news reporter, “And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. . . . Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.” This past April, O’Reilly, a host at Fox News, was forced to resign after Fox was discovered to have paid five women millions of dollars in exchange for silence about their accusations of sexual harassment. Ailes, the former head of Fox News, resigned last July, after he was accused of sexual harassment. Cosby went on trial this summer, charged with drugging and sexually assaulting a woman. The trial ended with a hung jury….
None of the former executives or assistants I spoke to quit because of the misconduct, but many expressed guilt and regret about not having said or done more. They spoke about what they believed to be a culture of silence about sexual assault inside Miramax and the Weinstein Company and across the entertainment industry more broadly…..
Top Actresses Who Have Accused Harvey Weinstein of Sexual Harassment
By JACEY FORTIN OCT. 10, 2017
Days after a series of sexual harassment allegations against the film producer Harvey Weinstein were made public in a report in The New York Times on Thursday, women are still coming forward to tell their stories.
Many of the allegations are remarkably similar. Actresses and other employees in Mr. Weinstein’s orbit described being invited to a hotel room, finding the producer in a bathrobe and being urged to exchange massages, have sex or watch him masturbate.
The New Yorker published a report on Tuesday detailing allegations of sexual assault, including rape. In total, more than 20 women have now reportedly accused Mr. Weinstein of assault or harassment. Through a spokeswoman, Mr. Weinstein has denied engaging in nonconsensual sex.
Many of the reported encounters occurred in the 1990s and involved women in their 20s who were just beginning to make names for themselves. Their stories share a common thread: fear that reporting the inappropriate behavior of a titan of the film industry could backfire and destroy their career and reputation….
Child and Ritual Abuse Articles
Articles by Neil Brick
Child Abuse Wiki