AceShowbiz - Two women have accused Fox News' Ed Henry, Sean Hannity, and Tucker Carlson of sexual misconduct in a new lawsuit.
In papers filed on Monday (20Jul20), former Fox News staffer Jennifer Eckhart's attorney claims she was "violently raped" by Henry, who was fired by the network on 1 July (20), after he asked her to be his "sex slave" and "threatened punishment and retaliation if she didn't comply with his sexual demands."
It also alleges that Henry "took photos of Ms. Eckhart" and retained them "for purposes of blackmail that could destroy her career," with text messages allegedly showing Henry speaking graphically and vulgarly to Eckhart, calling her his "little whore."
Meanwhile, journalist Cathy Areu's lawyer alleges she was sexually harassed by Henry, further suggesting she was sexually harassed by Hannity and Carlson, as well as Fox News correspondents Howard Kurtz and Gianno Caldwell.
It's claimed Henry sent "a slew of wildly inappropriate sexual images and messages - which are in her possession - throughout the first half of this year," which allegedly included nude photographs and videos of other women performing sexual acts.
The lawsuit names Fox News, Henry, Hannity, Carlson and Kurtz as defendants.
Shortly after the filing was made public, Henry tweeted, "I will fight with every fiber of my being," along with a statement from his attorney Cathy Foti, who insisted, "Ms. Eckhart initiated and completely encouraged a consensual relationship," with her client.
"Ed Henry looks forward to presenting actual facts and evidence, which will contradict the fictional accounts contained in the complaint. That evidence includes graphic photos and other aggressively suggestive communications that Ms. Eckhart sent to Mr. Henry."
In response to the filing, Fox News issued a statement to People, stating the organisation takes "all claims of harassment, misconduct and retaliation seriously, promptly investigating them and taking immediate action as needed."
"Based on the findings of a comprehensive independent investigation conducted by an outside law firm, including interviews with numerous eyewitnesses, we have determined that all of Cathy Areu's claims against Fox News, including its management as well as its hosts Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity & Howard Kurtz and its contributor Gianno Caldwell, are false, patently frivolous and utterly devoid of any merit," they insisted.