Bill O'Reily, Fox News Sued for Disparaging Female Accuser

Bill O'Reily, Fox News Sued for Disparaging Female Accuser

Bill O'Reily, Fox News Sued for Disparaging Female Accuser

"This cynical falsehood about a non-existent hot line was made to bolster O'Reilly's claim that the women who received settlements must have fabricated their claims or they would have complained", said Bernstein's attorney Nancy Erika Smith, whose Montclair, N.J., law firm Smith Mullin represented Gretchen Carlson in her suit against former Fox chief executive Roger Ailes.

O'Reilly made a statement to The New York Times last April, which triggered Bernstein's lawsuit. Rachel Witlieb Bernstein says it was O'Reilly who didn't adhere to the terms of their July 2002 settlement.

Bernstein also alleged that O'Reilly violated the non-disparagement clause of their 2002 confidential settlement, and added that he and the network portrayed her and other accusers as "liar and politically motivated extortionist".

She says O'Reilly insinuated she extorted him which she says is a lie, calling the former FNC host a "serial abuser".

Fox News ended its association with O'Reilly in April due to sexual harassment allegations against the TV host and commentator. She was forced out of her job at Fox News and paid a settlement because of his mistreatment.

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The complaint, filed in NY federal court, also addresses statements from Fox News this past April. In my more than 20 years at Fox News Channel, no one has ever filed a complaint about me with the Human Resources Department, even on the anonymous hotline. She did go to HR and other company executives to complain about him several times. "Others at Fox confirmed Ms. Bernstein's complaints".

A lawyer for Ms. Bernstein, Neil Mullin, asked that O'Reilly and Fox release all victims from their non-disclosure agreements in order to "let the truth out".

The amount of the payout was not disclosed, though the story notes that the network paid five women about $13 million to forego litigation over O'Reilly's behavior. "It is cowardly to publicly attack these women knowing they have been subjected to contractual provisions requiring absolute silence". "Fox News breached its contract with plaintiff by allowing and authorizing its employee Bill O'Reilly to disparage and defame Ms. Bernstein and to make statements other than those to which the parties agreed".

Citing harm to Bernstein's reputation, "severe emotional distress, physical sickness, and loss of income", the complaint drills into the specific violations that it alleges both O'Reilly and FNC committed. "The statement by Fox News also violated the Confidentiality Clause in the Agreement".

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