CNN Pays Ex-Staff Members Millions to Keep Them Silent

CNN Pays Ex-Staff Members Millions to Keep Them Silent

( – CNN fired anchor Chris Cuomo in December 2021 after the New York Attorney General’s Office released documents revealing his role in helping his brother, former NY governor Andrew Cuomo, handle the fallout from accusations he sexually harassed state workers. Then, in early February 2021, CNN head Jeff Zucker stepped down after an internal inquiry into Cuomo’s misdeeds revealed Zucker had an affair with another CNN employee and failed to disclose it to network executives. If you think this sounds like a soap opera, just wait, the plot thickens.

New media reports indicate Zucker and his mistress received millions from the network as part of an effort to buy their silence.

On March 8, news outlets reported Zucker received a roughly $10 million payout from CNN shortly after leaving the network. His partner, Allison Gollust, resigned earlier this year and received a $1 million package from the network.

It appears Zucker had considered suing CNN and its parent company, WarnerMedia, for defamation. Additionally, he reportedly signed a non-disclosure agreement with the company shortly before reaching an agreement to receive the one-time payment.

WarnerMedia is in the process of merging with Discovery, and news outlets reported the company had concerns regarding what information Zucker might reveal during the statutory discovery process accompanying the merger. Likewise, Chris Cuomo recently sent a letter to WarnerMedia officials asking them to preserve documents related to CNN’s investigation of his brother.

Do you think companies should be able to shield themselves from potential legal accountability by paying hush money to former staff members?

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