Leslie Moonves, the embattled CEO of CBS who has been charged by numerous women with sexual misconduct, has resigned from his post, a CBS statement said Sunday.
Moonves and CBS will “donate $20 million to one or more organizations that support the #MeToo movement and equality for women in the workplace. The donation, which will be made immediately, has been deducted from any severance benefits that may be due Moonves following the Board’s ongoing independent investigation,” CBS said in the statement.
The advocacy group Time’s Up said it wants the truth, CNN reported.
“We will accept nothing less than full transparency of the investigation’s findings, a commitment to real change across all levels of CBS management and no reward for Les Moonves,” the group said in a statement.
The resignation comes hours after the New Yorker published allegations from six women against Moonves. In July, six other women made allegations of sexual assault or sexual misconduct against Moonves.
The allegations include forced kissing, forced oral sex, unwanted advances and physical abuse. Some of the women said Moonves retaliated against them and that their careers suffered after they rebuffed him CBS reported.
Moonves continued to deny the claims in a statement released Sunday.
“For the past 24 years it has been an incredible privilege to lead CBS’s renaissance and transformation into a leading global media company,” Moonves, 68, said in a statement, according to The Washington Post. “Untrue allegations from decades ago are now being made against me that are not consistent with who I am. … I am deeply saddened to be leaving the company.”
Moonves did admit, however, he had consensual relationships with three of the women who have accused him of misconduct, according to The Associated Press. He did not identify them.
Joseph Ianniello, the current chief operating officer of CBS, will serve as interim CEO, CBS reported.
Moonves had been in line for a $100 million in a package from CBS, according to CNBC, but media analyst Porter Bibb told CNBC Monday that Moonves might end up with nothing if the newest allegations are true. Moonves has made about $70 million a year as CEO of CBS.
Bibb has more than 40 years of experience on Wall Street.
“He’s denying (the allegations) strongly, and I think he’s going to end up getting zip,” Bibb, managing partner at Mediatech Capital Partners, told CNBC’s “Squawkbox.”
CBS said Sunday that it had put any exit package for Moonves on hold until it could determine the truth of the newest allegations against him.
Jeffrey Fager, the executive producer of “60 Minutes,” has also been accused of inappropriate conduct but has denied the claims, according to CBS.
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