(Bloomberg) — Six additional women have come forward to accuse CBS Corp. Chief Executive Officer Les Moonves of harassment or assault in previous decades as he and the media company’s board negotiate his exit, the New Yorker reported.
The reported incidents occurred in the 1980s and early 2000s and include claims that the executive forced women to perform oral sex on him, exposed himself, and used intimidation and physical violence, according to the New Yorker story published Sunday. The author is Ronan Farrow, whose reporting previously helped topple movie producer Harvey Weinstein.
Moonves, in a statement to the New Yorker, acknowledged three of the encounters while maintaining that they were consensual. “The appalling accusations in this article are untrue,” the executive said, adding that he has “never used my position to hinder the advancement or careers of women.” CBS and controlling shareholder National Amusements Inc. couldn’t immediately be reached for comment on Sunday.
One of the women filed a complaint late last year with the Los Angeles Police Department but prosecutors declined to pursue charges because the statute of limitations had expired, the New Yorker reported, citing law-enforcement officials it didn’t name.
CNBC reported on Thursday that CBS’s board has offered Moonves a roughly $100 million package to leave, comprised almost entirely of company stock. Under Moonves’s contract, the 68-year-old could be owed as much as $180 million in severance — as well as a production deal — but the CEO is facing challenges on a number of fronts. He’s been battling National Amusements over board control, in addition to the harassment complaints.
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