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Fox News complainant in UK over Sky-Fox deal

Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 01:46

A woman who accused former Fox News presenter Bill O'Reilly of sexual harassment in the United States has called on Britain to block Fox's owner Rupert Murdoch from taking full control of Britain's pay-TV group Sky. Sonia Legg reports.

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She'd come a long way but Wendy Walsh is on a mission. The American used to be a regular guest on a Fox show hosted by Bill O'Reilly, a presenter she's accused of sexual harassment. She has hired a lawyer to try and persuade the British regulator Ofcom to prevent Rupert Murdoch's Twenty First Century Fox taking full ownership of Sky. (SOUNDBITE) (English) LAWYER LISA BLOOM MAKING STATEMENT OUTSIDE OFCOM OFFICE, SAYING: "I came to the UK to make you aware of the epidemic of sexual harassment and retaliation and allegations of racism rampant inside the Murdoch media empire in the U.S." Twenty First Century Fox wants to buy the near 61 percent of Sky which it doesn't already own for $14.5 billion. As it's listed in London the British government has asked Ofcom to assess whether a deal would be in the public interest. It's already been cleared by the European Commission, but it's politically sensitive in Britain. A previous attempt in 2011 was derailed by a phone hacking scandal at one of Murdoch's British newspapers. It revealed close ties between politicians, police and the media. (SOUNDBITE) (English) LAWYER LISA BLOOM MAKING STATEMENT OUTSIDE OFCOM OFFICE, SAYING: "Given everything that we know about the Murdoch empire, let alone the revelations to come we believe it would be irresponsible for this deal to go through." O'Reilly parted company with Fox last month. Newspaper reports claimed he and Fox paid five women a total of $13 million to settle harassment claims New York lawyer Douglas Wigdor has said he will also be meeting Ofcom this week. He represents 20 current and former Fox News employees who are suing the network for alleged racial and sexual bias.

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Fox News complainant in UK over Sky-Fox deal

Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 01:46