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Report finds Les Moonves obstructed investigation, might not get $120 million severance

Report finds Les Moonves obstructed investigation, might not get $120 million severance
[Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images]

Former CBS Chairman Les Moonves may not get the $120 million severance package he believes he deserves. Moonves resigned from his position in the wake of multiple credible claims of years of sexual misconduct painstakingly documented by The New Yorker.

Now, lawyers for CBS have released a report of their own and determined that Moonves’s behavior was even worse than The New Yorker reported. They spoke to 11 of Moonves’s 17 accusers and verified that he “engaged in multiple acts of serious nonconsensual sexual misconduct in and outside of the workplace, both before and after he came to CBS in 1995,” the New York Times writes. The paper got an advanced look at the lawyers’ 60-page report, which also includes previously undisclosed allegations, including multiple reports of Moonves receiving “oral sex from at least four CBS employees under circumstances that sound transactional and improper to the extent that there was no hint of any relationship, romance, or reciprocity” and “a network employee who was ‘on call’ to perform oral sex on Mr. Moonves.” The report concludes that Moonves tried to use CBS resources to silence actress Bobbie Phillips, who had accused him of assaulting her in the ’90s.

The lawyers also assert that Moonves “deliberately lied about and minimized” his sexual misconduct to investigators.  They determined that Moonves tried to cover his tracks, deleting hundreds of potentially incriminating text messages, and when asked to turn over his iPad to investigators, gave them his son’s instead.

The lawyers contend that the CBS board has justification to deny Moonves his $120 million severance package. According to The New York Times, the board has not made a decision and might not do so until January.

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