Former Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly was hit with another defamation lawsuit on Thursday, this time by a fellow former Fox News employee.
The Blast reports that Laurie Dhue, who worked as an anchor on the network from 2000-08, claims O'Reilly made false and defamatory statements about her both in an interview with The New York Times and in the statement he released following his dismissal in April 2017.
O'Reilly claimed in his statement that the numerous allegations against him — including he and Fox News allegedly paying out $13 million to six women for sexual misconduct — were "completely unfounded claims." In his interview with the Times, he said he was "vulnerable to lawsuits from individuals who want (him) to pay them to avoid negative publicity."
"In my more than 20 years at Fox News Channel, no one has ever filed a complaint about me with the Human Resources Department, even on the anonymous hotline," O'Reilly told the Times.
Dhue took exception to those claims, as written in her lawsuit (acquired by The Blast).
"As part of his desperate campaign to clear his name, O'Reilly published false statements about Dhue — as well as the other women — calling her a liar, swearing that her allegations were fabricated in an effort to obtain a settlement, falsely asserting that her purported claims against O'Reilly were politically motivated, and lying by saying that he only paid settlements to avoid having his family go through litigation, not because he had engaged in the claimed sexual misconduct," the suit claims.
Dhue is now the fourth woman to sue O'Reilly over his comments. She also claims that because of O'Reilly's comments, she was "indirectly mentioned" on John Oliver's HBO show Last Week Tonight and was on the receiving end of a satire sketch on Saturday Night Live, with Alec Baldwin playing O'Reilly.
"All of the statements made by O'Reilly were made with malice as the intent of making such statements was to destroy Dhue's reputation — along with the other women's reputations he defamed — in order to bolster his own reputation, the only way O'Reilly could attempt to salvage his reputation," the lawsuit continued.0comments
Former Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly said in an interview in October that she directly complained about O'Reilly's behavior to the presidents of the network, which went against O'Reilly's claim that no co-worker had come forward with complaints during his tenure.
"O'Reilly's suggestion that no one ever complained about his behavior is false," Kelly said. "I know because I complained."