April 12, 2017 12:41 pm

Lisa Bloom calls Fox News ‘a cesspool of sexual harassment,’ demands investigation

(L-R) Lawyer Lisa Bloom and Fox News host Bill O'Reilly.

Getty Images
A A

Lawyer Lisa Bloom, who is representing one of the women who has accused Fox News host Bill O’Reilly of sexual harassment, is calling on the New York State Division of Human Rights to intervene at Fox News.

Story continues below

Bloom, a prominent civil rights lawyer, submitted a letter for an independent probe to the New York State Division of Human Rights on Tuesday.

Last week, Bloom held a press conference with her client Dr. Wendy Walsh, a former regular guest on Fox’s The O’Reilly Factor TV show who said O’Reilly reneged on an offer to secure her a lucrative job on the network after she declined his invitation to join him in his hotel suite after a dinner in early 2013.

READ MORE: Fox News to investigate sexual harassment claim against Bill O’Reilly

Bloom’s letter details the claims of “dozens” of women who say at times over the past 13 years they were sexually harassed at Fox News, labelling the network as a “cesspool of sexual harassment, intimidation and retaliation.”

Some of the women named include Laurie Luhn, Gretchen Carlson, Megyn Kelly and Andrea Tantaros.

WATCH BELOW: FOX News’ Bill O’Reilly accused of sexual harassing former guest

Bloom says many have since been driven from the network and the television industry.

READ MORE: Roger Ailes, Fox News agree to pay $20M in sexual harassment settlement with Gretchen Carlson

Bloom’s letter brings together allegations from Walsh and other women against O’ Reilly and former Fox News chief Roger Ailes, who resigned from the network in July amid harassment allegations.

“In at least one case, Mr. Ailes threatened an employee into having sex with him, making a video of the event and then blackmailing her into years of sexual relations with the threat that otherwise he would release the video,” Bloom wrote.

She likened Ailes’ operation of the cable network to the mafia, “riddled with corruption and surveillance, smear campaigns and hush money.”

READ MORE: Advertisers continue to flee Bill O’Reilly’s show over sexual harassment allegations

“Fox News cannot be allowed to so openly and blatantly violate New York law,” Bloom wrote in the letter. “This wrong cries out for a remedy.”

“Show this company that it is not above the law,” she wrote.

O’ Reilly hasn’t admitted any wrongdoing but the controversy has led many advertisers to pull their ads from his TV program. He’s also taking a vacation from his Fox News Channel show and announced the break at the end of Tuesday’s show.

O’Reilly made a point of saying the vacation was planned and long in the works. He’s scheduled to return April 24.

—With files from The Associated Press

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Report an error

Comments

Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.