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Federal Probe Into Fox News’ Harassment Settlements, Racial Culture Expands

© AP Photo / Mary Altaffer / Fox News Headquarters
Fox News Headquarters - Sputnik International
The Department of Justice’s federal probe of the business practices at Fox News has been joined by financial crimes experts at the United States Postal Inspection Service.

The investigation has now been widened to include mail fraud and wire fraud cases. According to a report released on Thursday evening by CNN, the agencies have been interviewing both former and current staff of the network.

O’Reilly may be guilty of bragging for years about his reporting from a war zone that he may never have set foot in. - Sputnik International
Fox News Drops Bill O’Reilly Amid Sexual Harassment Scandal

In February, it was reported that there was an investigation into whether or not the company was required to inform shareholders of payouts related to legal settlements of sexual harassment claims against then-Fox CEO Roger Ailes.

Ailes was ousted from the network shortly after.

Earlier this month, the network’s top host, Bill O’Reilly, was also fired, after the New York Times revealed millions of dollars in settlements had been paid out to five women who had accused the right-wing firebrand of sexual harassment.

Since then, more women have come forward.

According to the new report from CNN, payouts aren’t the only thing the network is under investigation for, however.

“Investigators have been probing possible misconduct by Fox News personnel and asking questions about the overall environment at the network,” CNN reports.

Tamara Holder - Sputnik International
Fox News Settles Another Sexual Harassment Lawsuit for $2.5 Million
There are currently nine employees suing the network, claiming racial harassment.

The employees allege that there is a pattern of “top-down racial harassment” in Fox’s payroll department.

The original lawsuit was brought on by Fox News’ manager for credit collectors, Monica Douglas, who claimed that she was subjected to racist comments for years, and that network executives knew about the abuse but ignored it.

Douglas alleged in her suit that former comptroller Judy Slater expressed “an unwillingness to even be near black people.” The complaint added that racially charged comments by Slater included “suggestions that black men were ‘women beaters’ and that black people wanted to physically harm white people.”

Slater was fired from the network last month, and the network issued a statement saying that they “took the appropriate action in investigating and firing Ms. Slater within two weeks of this being brought to our attention.”

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