Fox News commentator, in lawsuit, says she was sexually assaulted by host

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Scottie Nell Hughes in July 2017

Political commentator Scottie Nell Hughes filed a lawsuit Monday accusing Charles Payne, a Fox Business Network host, of rape. She says Payne raped her in 2013 and her invitations to appear on Fox shows "increased dramatically" after the assault.

The suit alleges Hughes brought her allegations in confidence to Fox News in June of this year.

"Shortly after Ms. Hughes terminated further contact between herself and Payne, Payne's wife contacted former Fox co-President Bill Shine ("Shine") to complain about the relationship and demand that Shine block any continued appearances by Ms. Hughes on Fox programs, she alleged".

"In July of 2013, I was raped by Charles Payne", Hughes said.

Fox News released a statement Monday excoriating Hughes and her lawyer for the filing. "Since then, I have been living an absolute hell".

Payne was taken off the air earlier in the summer while Fox News investigated Hughes' initial claims against him.

"He received a call from a reporter at the National Enquirer who was seeking comment about a breaking story involving an alleged affair between Ms. Hughes and Payne".

Her civil lawsuit filed Monday in United States District Court in the Southern District of NY named Payne, 21st Century Fox and Fox News and listed the charges as gender motivated violence, gender discrimination, retaliation and defamation. "Payne used his position of power to pressure Ms. Hughes into submission", she alleged. Payne returned to the show in September following an internal investigation. Wigdor already has numerous clients involved with legal actions against Fox News Channel, according to Variety.

"The latest publicity stunt of lawsuit filed by Doug Wigdor has absolutely no merit and is downright shameful", it read. "He will defend himself vigorously against these claims and will hold those responsible to account", Halpern said. "We are confident that when the evidence is presented in this case, Mr. Payne will be fully vindicated and these outrageous accusations against him will be confirmed as completely false". "We will vigorously defend this", said a statement obtained by Law Newz.

Fox News has faced a wide-range of sexual harassment claims. Worse, to support Fox " s self-serving spin, Briganti also leaked a prepared statement and "apology" by Payne that described the relationship as a "consensual affair, '" according to the complaint. CEO Roger Ailes resigned after host Gretchen Carlson said he sexually harassed her. Host Bill O'Reilly has fielded numerous allegations, and settled a few, though he had denied the claims. After that, not only did Fox keep her off its own airwaves, but it.



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