Bill O'Reilly, Fox News Sued for Defamation by Female Accuser

Bill O'Reilly

The New York Times reports that O'Reilly accuser Rachel Witlieb Bernstein has filed a lawsuit after both O'Reilly and the network publicly "portrayed her as a liar and politically motivated extortionist".

"He's gone far beyond that and painted our client in a awful light", lawyer Neil Mullin told WaPo, claiming that O'Reilly violated the 2002 settlement case by implying that Bernstein's claims were politically motivated, Variety reported. Bernstein had complained about abuse, non-sexual in nature, by O'Reilly when she worked at Fox.

In addition to that, the suit cites additional comments which appeared in The Hollywood Reporter and various other outlets, which Bernstein says violated the terms of their agreement.

"A History" author has time and again claimed that the harassment allegations that led to his ouster from the Fox News in April have no merit while adding that he resolved the matters privately just to protect his children.

Bernstein alleges in her suit that she complained repeatedly about O'Reilly's mistreatment of her to the company's human resources department and top Fox News executives, but nothing was done. In Monday's complaint, Bernstein's lawyer's said she did not discuss her settlements with the Times.

In the New York Times story, O'Reilly said he paid Bernstein and other women who complained because he's "vulnerable to lawsuits from individuals who want me to pay them to avoid negative publicity". She accused him of forcing her into a "nonconsensual relationship".

O'Reilly allegedly made other, similar comments since then. "They should release all victims from their NDS and let the truth out". Bernstein alleges that Fox News, through its parent company, 21st Century Fox, falsely told The Times that it had received no complaints to an anonymous company hotline because, she contends, there wasn't a hotline while she was employed there in 2002. In her lawsuit, Bernstein pushed back against O'Reilly's narrative.

The lawsuit says Bernstein has suffered loss of income, emotional distress and sickness. Mullin's law firm, Smith Mullin, also represented former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson, who alleged she was harassed by the late Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes. "In fact, he is a serial abuser and Ms. Bernstein's complaints about him were far from extortionate".