Los Angeles Ethics Commission Rejects Settlement with Former CBS CEO Leslie Moonves

The Los Angeles City Ethics Commission unanimously rejected a proposed settlement with former CBS Chief Executive Leslie Moonves on Wednesday. Moonves had been accused of interfering with a police investigation into sexual assault allegations against him. The proposed settlement, which included an $11,250 fine, was deemed insufficient by the commission, who believed a stronger penalty was warranted given the “extremely egregious nature of the allegations.”

Moonves, who resigned from CBS in September 2018 amidst a widening sex scandal, has consistently denied harassing or assaulting women. The ethics complaint against him outlined his alleged involvement in burying an LAPD complaint made by a woman accusing him of sexual assault in the 1980s. Former Los Angeles Police Cmdr. Cory Palka, who had a longstanding relationship with Moonves, was accused of working with the executive to ensure the complaint did not gain traction within the Police Department or the L.A. County district attorney’s office.

The rejection of the proposed settlement by the Ethics Commission is considered unusual, as it is typically the final approving body for such agreements. The commissioners believed that the severity of the allegations warranted a stronger penalty. Each count against Moonves carried a maximum penalty of $5,000, totaling $15,000.

In addition to Moonves, the commission also rejected a proposed $2,500 settlement with Ian Metrose, the former senior vice president of talent relations and special events at CBS. Metrose admitted to violating city law by aiding and abetting the disclosure and misuse of confidential information.

The cases now remain with the enforcement division at the Ethics Commission, as they seek to increase the penalties for such violations. The current maximum fines, set by the City Charter, have not been updated in decades and are considered inadequate for addressing egregious allegations.

This development adds to the ongoing fallout from the #MeToo movement, which exposed widespread sexual harassment and misconduct in various industries, including the entertainment sector. The rejection of the settlement highlights the city’s commitment to holding individuals accountable for their actions and ensuring that appropriate penalties are imposed.

Author: CrimeDoor

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