The report compiled by two law firms found that Moonves, facing the prospect of losing his lucrative job, intentionally destroyed evidence and misled investigators to save his $120 million severance package. The document, which is only a draft and may change before it’s presented to the CBS board next week, also included previously undisclosed allegations of sexual misconduct.
The New Yorker first reported in July that a dozen women had accused Moonves of sexual harassment or assault. Moonves was forced to step down in September, and the CBS board said both he and the company would jointly donate $20 million to women’s equality groups, deducted from any severance benefits.
Moonves has vehemently denied the allegations and moved to paint some incidents as consensual.
Some worried that Moonves’ ironclad contract would protect his payout despite the claims. His most recent deal stipulated that he had to be fired with cause, which included fraud, felony conviction or failure to cooperate with company investigations or policies. Allegations of sexual harassment that didn’t violate such policies did not equate to cause, according to a September story from the Times.
The 59-page draft report detailed by the outlet this week found that Moonves had been “evasive and untruthful” during four talks with investigators, and also noted that he “deliberately lied” about the claims of misconduct. It also described allegations of sexual acts that sounded “transactional” and said several people told lawyers that the CBS chief had someone “on call” to give him oral sex.
“A number of employees were aware of this and believed that the woman was protected from discipline or termination as a result of it,” the report reads, according to the Times.
The CBS board said Tuesday that the findings had not yet been reported to its members and that the group had reached “no conclusions.”
“Our work is still in progress, and there are bound to be many facts and assessments that evolve and change as the work is completed,” a representative told the Times in a statement.
Read the full story at The New York Times.