web analytics
a

Facebook

Twitter

Copyright 2015 Libero Themes.
All Rights Reserved.

8:30 - 6:00

Our Office Hours Mon. - Fri.

703-406-7616

Call For Free 15/M Consultation

Facebook

Twitter

Search
Menu
Westlake Legal Group > sexual misconduct

Batten down the #MeToo hatches: NBC waives non-disclosure agreements

Westlake Legal Group maddow-nda Batten down the #MeToo hatches: NBC waives non-disclosure agreements The Blog sexual misconduct Ronan Farrow Rachel Maddow Nondisclosure Agreement NBC News nbc Megyn Kelly Matt Lauer harvey weinstein

That’s game and set for Ronan Farrow and his new book Catch and Kill, and it might just be match as well. The book’s look at NBC News’ actions in suppressing his reporting on Harvey Weinstein and its own issues with sexual predation has network execs shrieking about smears. That’s easy to claim, Farrow has said in response in almost every media appearance, when the network forced victims and witnesses to sign non-disclosure agreements in exchange for compensation for losing their jobs.

With those NDAs hanging like a Sword of Damocles over their heads, there was no way for NBC to win this public fight. And so, late on a Friday night, the network has now declared that they will waive enforcement of NDAs on issues of sexual harassment. However, the network made sure to spin this disingenuously as they announced the waiver:

RACHEL MADDOW: NBC News is now telling us on the record that there is nothing in any non-disparagement or non-disclosure agreement that anyone may have signed with this company that can legally prevent you from talking about your experience. Here’s the statement from NBC, ah, NBCUniversal — this is from a spokesperson from NBCUniversal. Quote:

“Any former NBC News employee who believes that they cannot disclose their experience with sexual harassment as a result of a confidentiality or non-disparagement provision in their separation agreement should contact NBCUniversal and we will release them from that perceived obligation.”

“Perceived obligation”? Who is NBC kidding with this statement and explanation? It may well be true that those NDAs would have proven unenforceable in court when it involved the victims themselves (witnesses may be a different story), but it would have pitted former employees individually against a raft of corporate attorneys in a process that would have bled them dry long before they could win. The network didn’t make the NDAs part of significant financial settlements just to eat through the office supply of paper and ball-point pens. The network bought the silence of these victims and witnesses, and made damned sure that the victims and witnesses knew the cost of going public.

One has to wonder why these former employees have to come to NBC to have these obligations waived individually, too. Why not just state publicly that they will waive NDAs in toto? Do they want to regulate who can and cannot speak? After this public statement, it’s not likely to matter, since it implies that the obligation is forfeit across the board, but Mother May I is still a weird way to structure this.

Unfortunately, Farrow painted NBC into this corner, which they now pretend was the veranda all along. They have no choice but to claim that the women (and men perhaps as well) gagged by NDAs can come forward and talk, because NBC has zero credibility at the moment anyway. So who comes tumbling out of the gate first? Megyn Kelly wasn’t around at the network for most of the Lauer era, but she clearly has something to say about it, and got a huge exit payment that seemed aimed at keeping her from saying it (and an NDA was reportedly the big stumbling block to the settlement). Her testimony won’t be nearly as important as the less-well-known people who got shunted off into obscurity by NBC’s NDAs, but it will get a lot of attention if and when it comes. And that might make it easier for the lesser-known victims and witnesses to come forward, although it might also tend to overshadow their testimony, too.

The gates are wide open now, though. If Farrow’s reporting on NBC was all wet, we’ll soon see. Don’t be too surprised if NBC execs start taking retirements to spend more time with their families, however, especially in the news division.

By the way, the full segment on this subject from Rachel Maddow is well worth watching. Maddow’s skepticism about her network’s serial prevarications on this subject comes barreling through her understandable restraint in emoting it. The first six minutes of so focus mainly on Harvey Weinstein, but everything after that is NBC and its actions in suppressing Farrow’s report. The part about the NDA comes up at the 12-minute mark, but not before Maddow skewers NBC’s claim that Farrow’s seven-month investigation wasn’t in publishable condition when it emerged seven weeks later to win a (shared) Pulitzer. Come on, man.

The post Batten down the #MeToo hatches: NBC waives non-disclosure agreements appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group maddow-nda-300x162 Batten down the #MeToo hatches: NBC waives non-disclosure agreements The Blog sexual misconduct Ronan Farrow Rachel Maddow Nondisclosure Agreement NBC News nbc Megyn Kelly Matt Lauer harvey weinstein   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

First Katie Hill, Now Another Dem Is Under Investigation for Alleged Relationship with Staffer

Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2019-10-24-at-8.56.45-PM First Katie Hill, Now Another Dem Is Under Investigation for Alleged Relationship with Staffer washington D.C. sexual misconduct House rules Guam Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post democrats Congress Allow Media Exception

Screenshot from this video

Democrats have been shellshocked by the allegations concerned Rep. Katie Hill (D-CA) that were broken exclusively by RedState about Hill being involved in a “throuple” with a campaign aide and her husband. Hill also allegedly had an affair with a staffer, her legislative director, Graham Kelly.

Hill has now admitted to having an “inappropriate relationship” with the campaign aide, but is still denying having a sexual relationship with her congressional staffer.

House Rules forbid having sexual relationships with staffers.

The House announced on Wednesday that they had launched an investigation into Hill based on the report by RedState.

From Fox News:

“The committee is aware of public allegations that Representative Katie Hill may have engaged in a sexual relationship with an individual on her congressional staff, in violation of House Rule XXIII, Clause 18(a),” Committee Chairman Ted Deutch, D-Fla., and Ranking Member Kenny Marchant, R-Texas, wrote. They added that the panel had launched “an investigation and will gather additional information regarding the allegations.”

But now it turns out that Katie Hill is not the only person they’re investigating.

Turns out there’s another Democrat who allegedly had an inappropriate relationship with a staffer.

The House Ethics Committee announced that they were also investigating Delegate Michael F.Q. San Nicolas (D-Guam) over allegations that he had a sexual relationship with a staffer & campaign finance abuses. They are looking into allegations that he converted campaign funds to personal use and accepted improper or excessive campaign contributions.

According to the Washington Times, legal counsel for San Nicolas said, “The congressman welcomes the opportunity for due process.”

Territories of the United States, like Guam, have non-voting delegates instead of representatives. San Nicolas has represented Guam’s at large district since January. He was elected to serve as the Vice Chair of the House Committee on Financial Services by fellow committee members.

Kuam News reported that in San Nicolas’ former chief of staff John Paul Manuel had filed a complaint with the Guam Election Commission about his former boss’ actions.

Here’s what Manuel said in September before the House announcement and he didn’t hold back.

From Kuam News:

Manuel told KUAM News, “How can you truly be supporting our troops when he is engaging in sexual relations with their wives while they are away? There is never a convenient time to reveal a friend’s wrong-doings. But the truth needed to be said. How is it responsible to have your chakmak on government payroll for $85,000? Powerful men need to realize the era of using political office as their own personal sexual playground is over. Government budgets don’t have any more room for chakmaks.”

Here’s more from Kuam News:

Kuam News also reported San Nicolas has a pretty poor voting record, according to Roll Call, observing that:

[I]n the Committee of the Whole, Congressman San Nicolas “voted just 47% of the time he has been eligible through October. 23rd”. Roll Call reports “overall he’s missed 138 or 259 votes so far”.

The post First Katie Hill, Now Another Dem Is Under Investigation for Alleged Relationship with Staffer appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2019-10-24-at-8.56.45-PM-300x206 First Katie Hill, Now Another Dem Is Under Investigation for Alleged Relationship with Staffer washington D.C. sexual misconduct House rules Guam Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post democrats Congress Allow Media Exception   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

New Project Veritas Video Alleges Possible Sexual Misconduct by CNN Producer, Protection by Network

Westlake Legal Group CNN-Text-Message-Alerts-e1490239895385 New Project Veritas Video Alleges Possible Sexual Misconduct by CNN Producer, Protection by Network sexual misconduct sexual harassment project veritas News media bias Media Me Too Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post donald trump CNN Allow Media Exception #metoo

Project Veritas has been dropping a series of videos they’ve titled “exposing CNN.”

The videos they’ve released so far have shown employees behind the scenes exposing bias against President Donald Trump and saying staffers were told to focus on impeachment by CNN President Jeff Zucker.

Some of the employees spoke about how they missed doing the news as they used to prior to being all about Trump.

One employee even spoke about how he didn’t think that this would stop until Trump was dead, which he said was “hopefully soon.”

But now the latest video shows employees revealing allegations of possible sexual misconduct by a CNN Supervising Producer for the White House and Political Unit, Steve Brusk.

The video shows Rick Saleeby, a CNN producer who Project Veritas identifies as a producer for “The Lead with Jake Tapper,” saying that he intervened when he allegedly believed Brusk was going to touch a 21 year old female employee inappropriately.

From Project Veritas:

“So, like, there is this girl that was twenty-one. She’s actually a good friend of mine. She had just gotten hired after being an intern…And she was getting…There was a going away party for a co-worker. We were all having a really good time…She was very well liked. We were getting drunk. He started like staying close to her…Arm around her.”

Saleeby went on to describe the scene with more details: “She had a skirt on. I could see the hand. I like grab her. It looked like I was being the assaulter because I grabbed her so aggressive…To keep her from him. Like go around her and go Come over here and looked at him because I could flatten him…It was like…I wouldn’t do it because then I would be the one who got fired…He would have absolutely been like ‘get in a cab with me later.’”

Saleeby says he found out later there were allegedly other accusations against Brusk.

When asked why nothing was done, Saleeby alleged Brusk was protected.

“[H]e is protected by certain people there…Value him or like him. I don’t even know, I can’t…Like other higher ups there. This is not an unusual thing in companies.”

Another employee, CNN media coordinator Nick Neville also spoke about a situation where Brusk had hired a female staffer without the job being posted, suggesting that while it was not like a “MeToo” situation, it was “hush-hush” according to the girl.

“But this other girl works pretty closely with him and he would email her, I mean, he emails all of us, but he would email and was very friendly to her, the staffer continued. “And then she just like got a job like working on his team and she was like, oh it’s hush-hush. The job was never posted anywhere. I was like, what is it? I just thought it was a little strange. Was there an agreement? What happened there?”

“Like I’m saying, that’s open knowledge, but it just kind of like goes along with what he said,” he added.

Project Veritas tried to get a response from CNN on the allegations, reaching out to Jake Tapper, Rick Saleeby, Matt Dornic (the Vice President of Communications) and Steve Brusk. The only response they mention was one from Brusk who told them to contact his PR people.

The post New Project Veritas Video Alleges Possible Sexual Misconduct by CNN Producer, Protection by Network appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group CNN-Text-Message-Alerts-300x175 New Project Veritas Video Alleges Possible Sexual Misconduct by CNN Producer, Protection by Network sexual misconduct sexual harassment project veritas News media bias Media Me Too Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post donald trump CNN Allow Media Exception #metoo   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Video: Hillary Clinton Accidentally Admits Male Democrats Are Exempt From #BelieveWomen Because Orange Man Bad

Westlake Legal Group JoeBidenHillaryClinton1 Video: Hillary Clinton Accidentally Admits Male Democrats Are Exempt From #BelieveWomen Because Orange Man Bad washington D.C. sexual misconduct sexual harassment Sexual Assault Politics People Magazine North Carolina Media Joe Biden Hillary Clinton Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post elections donald trump democrats delaware Culture Campaigns campaign Bill Clinton biden Allow Media Exception 2020 Elections 2020 #metoo

Joe Biden gives Hillary Clinton a long hug. Aug. 2016. Screen grab via CNN.

Whether it’s making excuses for her husband’s lecherous, adulterous, and deplorable behavior when he was POTUS, being actively involved in smearing his accusers, or declaring 20 years later that we must believe all women who accuse men of sexual misconduct, Hillary Clinton is a woman of many, many faces.

She proved it again in an interview she and her daughter Chelsea Clinton, an author, recently did with People Magazine.

Clinton was asked her thoughts about the 2020 Democratic candidates for president, and she noted she was “staying out of it” and planned to support whoever won the nomination.

But when asked about frontrunner Joe Biden and his well-documented overly handsy approach when it comes to women, Clinton rushed to his defense, characterizing his inappropriate touching as “a little annoying habit”:

She said that Biden, 76, who is a leading contender to challenge President Donald Trump in next year’s election, “is a thoroughly decent human being who has served our country honorably and well for decades.”

“You could take any person who sticks their little head above the parapet and says, ‘I’m going to run for president,’ and find something that … a little annoying habit or other kind of behavior that people are going to pick apart and disagree with,” she continued.

Why was Hillary so eager to sing Biden’s praises in spite of the numerous allegations of inappropriate touching and invasions of women’s private spaces? Because Orange Man Bad, of course:

“This man must be defeated,” Clinton told PEOPLE. “People who are putting themselves forward, which believe me, is a really difficult process to undergo, should be judged on the totality of their lives and their service.”

Voters must “get over it” and “vote for anybody” to get Trump out of office, even if that “anybody” likes to brush up behind women when they’re not looking and smell their hair, hug women a little too tightly for a little too long, and kiss women supporters full on the mouth:

“We can pick apart anybody. I mean, that’s a great spectator sport. But this man who’s there in the Oval Office right now poses a clear and present danger to the future of the United States. So get over it,” Clinton said. “Look at the candidates, look at what they’ve accomplished, look at what they have fought for — and vote for anybody to get rid of Donald Trump.”

Watch video of Clinton talking about Biden below:

Hillary Clinton defends yet another handsy Democratic male from criticism over his unseemly behavior. Who coulda predicted that?

Flashback –>> Andrea Mitchell lovingly narrates a clip of then Vice President Biden giving Hillary a looong hug, and notes he’s the touchy feely type (“nothing pervy here”, she states) – but that it’s no big deal because it’s just Joe Biden:

——
— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –

The post Video: Hillary Clinton Accidentally Admits Male Democrats Are Exempt From #BelieveWomen Because Orange Man Bad appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group JoeBidenHillaryClinton1-300x171 Video: Hillary Clinton Accidentally Admits Male Democrats Are Exempt From #BelieveWomen Because Orange Man Bad washington D.C. sexual misconduct sexual harassment Sexual Assault Politics People Magazine North Carolina Media Joe Biden Hillary Clinton Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post elections donald trump democrats delaware Culture Campaigns campaign Bill Clinton biden Allow Media Exception 2020 Elections 2020 #metoo   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Former Sen. Al Franken’s Comeback Tour Immediately Interrupted With Another #MeToo Cancellation Notice

Westlake Legal Group alfranken-2-620x325 Former Sen. Al Franken’s Comeback Tour Immediately Interrupted With Another #MeToo Cancellation Notice sexual misconduct sexual harassment Politics North Carolina Minnesota Front Page Stories Front Page Feminism Featured Story Featured Post democrats Culture Congress Allow Media Exception Al Franken #metoo

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., leaves the Capitol after speaking on the Senate floor, Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Franken said he will resign from the Senate in coming weeks following a wave of sexual misconduct allegations, a swift political fall for a once-rising Democratic star. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Former Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) has mostly stayed out of the spotlight since he resigned in early January 2018 after being hit with a wave of sexual misconduct allegations. But last week it was widely reported that Franken was launching a comeback of sorts with a new weekly SiriusXM radio show, which started Saturday.

Unfortunately for Franken, as soon as he launched his new program he was hit with another #MeToo allegation, this time from an unnamed former Sen. Patty Murray staffer who said he grabbed her behind in 2006:

The woman, who asked for her name not to be used, is now a senior staffer at an unnamed progressive organization, and said the incident occurred in 2006 shortly after she graduated from college and was working for Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.).

While being photographed with Franken, who was then still exploring his eventual 2008 run for Senate, the woman said he placed his hand on her buttocks.

“He’s telling the photographer, ‘Take another one. I think I blinked. Take another one.’ And I’m just frozen. It’s so violating. And then he gives me a little squeeze on my buttock, and I am bright red. I don’t say anything at the time, but I felt deeply, deeply uncomfortable,” the woman told the publication.

The woman told The Cut she did not tell anyone about the incident at the time out of embarrassment, but three people told the publication the woman talked to them about the alleged incident when the first allegations against Franken broke in late 2017, leading to his eventual resignation.

The Cut reached out to Franken for a response, and what he told them sounded similar to the responses he gave when asked about in the past the other allegations:

“Two years ago, I would have sworn that I’d never done anything to make anyone feel uncomfortable, but it’s clear that I must have been doing something. As I’ve said before, I feel terrible that anyone came away from an interaction with me feeling bad.”

That is…lame. Really lame. It’s almost like he’s saying “I didn’t think inappropriately touching women against their will would offend them.”

In the rare media interviews Franken has given since his resignation, he has expressed resentment towards the Senators who he said turned their backs on him instead of giving him the benefit of due process. Without evidence, former 2020 presidential candidate Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (NY) claimed for months that her call for Franken to resign cost her the support of top donors.

A number of Democratic Senators (former and current) have spoken out publicly over the last several months stating they wish they had handled Franken’s situation differently, and said they feel he was railroaded in December 2017 at a time when the #MeToo movement was gaining momentum.

New Yorker Magazine’s Jane Mayer wrote a thinly-sourced piece in July aimed at victim-shaming discrediting some of his accusers and rehabilitating his reputation.

As of this writing, Mayer has not commented on social media on the new allegation, nor have I found news reports that include any comments from those former or current Senators who expressed regret this year for how things were handled in 2017.

Stay tuned.

——
— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –

The post Former Sen. Al Franken’s Comeback Tour Immediately Interrupted With Another #MeToo Cancellation Notice appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group alfranken-2-300x157 Former Sen. Al Franken’s Comeback Tour Immediately Interrupted With Another #MeToo Cancellation Notice sexual misconduct sexual harassment Politics North Carolina Minnesota Front Page Stories Front Page Feminism Featured Story Featured Post democrats Culture Congress Allow Media Exception Al Franken #metoo   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Vanity Fair: You know who should be worried about Epstein’s photographs?

Westlake Legal Group Bill-Clinton-Daily-Show Vanity Fair: You know who should be worried about Epstein’s photographs? The Blog sexual misconduct Jeffrey Epstein donald trump Bill Clinton

Hint: It might not be the person you think, nor even the person Vanity Fair thinks. Allahpundit linked this story earlier today in his excellent run-down of the mysteries surrounding Jeffrey Epstein, but it might be worth a second look for its insight into another mystery. VF’s Emily Jane Fox notes that Donald Trump kept tabs on Epstein’s exploits through his tabloid contacts, but that story leads to another president with apparently much more risk:

Trump had been following the story closely. In the week or so leading up to his CPAC speech, David Pecker, who owned the Enquirer until it was sold in ruin earlier this year, visited Trump on the 26th floor of Trump Tower, bringing along an issue with a Prince Andrew and Epstein-related cover, according to people familiar with the meeting. Pecker, of course, was in the business of protecting Trump. An early supporter of his presidential campaign, Pecker has helped “catch and kill” at least two stories involving the real estate mogul and women who claimed to have had affairs with him. (Trump has denied the affairs.)

Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, who would later go to prison in part for his role in these hush money schemes, was in the room when Pecker sat down. Pecker, he later told me, used to send him articles and issues before they were published so that he and Trump could read them. After the meeting Trump called in Sam Nunberg, then a Trump Organization employee, who saw Pecker leaving Trump’s office. “Michael was sitting in there when I came in, and the issue of the National Enquirer with the pictures of Prince Andrew was on his desk,” Nunberg recalled. “He said not to tell anyone, but that Pecker had just been there and had brought the issue with him. Trump said that Pecker had told him that the pictures of Clinton that Epstein had from his island were worse.” (Cohen, speaking by phone from the Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, corroborated Nunberg’s version of the events, though he declined to add any additional information about the meeting.)

Oddly, the Vanity Fair article doesn’t follow up on the Clinton thread. Instead, it focuses on Trump, but largely in a manner that distances him from the stench. Fox notes that Trump never accompanied Epstein on what’s been termed the Lolita Express, or even hung out with him much. Fox links two pictures from 1997 and 2000 Epstein took with Trump, who isn’t exactly known as camera shy. Trump’s assertion that he had a falling out with Epstein “fifteen years ago” does come up, but without any hint that it was over Trump ejecting him from the Mar-a-Lago resort, allegedly because of his predatory behavior.

Fox dismisses the Clinton thread in a parenthetical to the focus on Trump:

(Clinton denies ever traveling to Little St. James Island, but has confirmed that he traveled with Epstein several times in 2002 and 2003, including trips to Africa in connection with the Clinton Foundation. In her interview with the Enquirer, Giuffre said she had seen Clinton around, but that she never saw him involved with women.)

Actually, what Giuffre said in 2015 (under her maiden name of Virginia Roberts) was that she’d seen Clinton around on the island, directly contradicting Clinton’s claims now. That’s a point that Fox skips in this parenthetical. Giuffre also said in the Enquirer interview that she didn’t witness him having sex with anyone, but that doesn’t mean it never happened, either. At any rate, his presence on the island with Epstein raises a lot of questions about what it was that Clinton saw — and why Clinton never spoke out about it.

And if Giuffre is correct about Clinton being on the island, it might turn out that Epstein has some pictures in his possession that would corroborate Giuffre. Or rather, Epstein might have had them in his possession, until Saturday night’s raid. Given that circumstance and the corroborated version of the conversation between Pecker, Nunberg, and Trump, one would think that Clinton’s potential risk here would be a bigger story than Trump’s single briefing about Epstein from Pecker.

Here’s another nugget from the 2015 interview that’s timely now, too. This tends to corroborate the claim from a woman who came forward today that Epstein wasn’t just molesting girls but using force to have sex with them:

As The ENQUIRER first reported, Epstein’s socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, procured Roberts and others for Epstein and his pals to engage in “forceful” sex with underage girls, the filing confirmed.

Roberts’ affidavit charges that Maxwell, the daughter of the late UK newspaper mogul Robert Maxwell, recruited her for prostitution in 1999 at age 15.

“I was trained to be ‘everything a man wanted to be,” Roberts said, detailing multiple sex encounters daily, instruction in the use of sex toys and Epstein’s reputed sex dungeon.

Ugh. Undoubtedly, we will be hearing more horror stories in the days and weeks ahead. Lots of men will have night sweats over this, and Clinton appears to be among them, but he likely won’t be alone:

Epstein’s black book of contacts — the printed phone directory that his Palm Beach butler, Alfredo Rodriguez, stole and that later was obtained by the FBI — includes Michael Jackson and Mick Jagger; more than a dozen aides to Clinton; other celebrities such as Alec Baldwin, Naomi Campbell and Jimmy Buffett; media titans such as Rupert Murdoch, Conrad Black and Michael Bloomberg; business magnates such as Richard Branson, Steve Forbes and Edgar Bronfman Jr.; Kennedys, Rockefellers and Rothschilds; lords and ladies; ambassadors and senators. …

There is no implication that most of the hundreds of people in the book were involved in or aware of Epstein’s alleged abuse of young girls. Some people listed in the book have said they barely know Epstein.

But after federal agents obtained the list, Rodriguez, the butler, circled a few names in black and noted them as “witnesses.” They included people who worked at Epstein’s Palm Beach estate and some other associates, including Alan Dershowitz, a Harvard law professor, and Trump, both of whom have denied any knowledge of Epstein’s alleged sexual abuses.

Trump banned Epstein from his Mar-a-Lago estate after a teenage girl who worked in the club’s locker room was recruited to give Epstein a massage, according to David Boies, an attorney for one of Epstein’s alleged victims.

Actually, Michael van der Galien observes, the Vanity Fair article is notable for its lack of any dirt on Trump:

What makes Vanity Fair‘s report double fascinating is that the leftist magazine clearly implies that Epstein doesn’t have any dirt on Trump himself. On Twitter, leftist users have been tweeting hopefully about how this could ruin Trump’s presidency. Vanity Fair knows better. When push comes to shove, this case will involve high-ranking and extremely influential Democrats.

So far? Sure, but don’t bet the farm on this being a single-party issue. A man like Epstein would make sure to suck up to players across the spectrum to protect himself, or at least protect himself by digging up dirt on both sides of the aisle. We have yet to see the full scope of Epstein’s sins, and it’s still an open question as to whether we ever will.

The post Vanity Fair: You know who should be worried about Epstein’s photographs? appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group Bill-Clinton-Daily-Show-300x159 Vanity Fair: You know who should be worried about Epstein’s photographs? The Blog sexual misconduct Jeffrey Epstein donald trump Bill Clinton   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Judge sanctions school system in sexual misconduct lawsuit

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A federal judge on Friday sanctioned Virginia’s largest school system for destroying or failing to preserve documents relevant to a lawsuit accusing school officials of ignoring a girl’s claim she was sexually assaulted.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael Nachmanoff in Alexandria imposed the sanctions Friday on the Fairfax County School Board as it prepares to defend its actions in a trial scheduled for next month.

An Oakton High School student says she was sexually assaulted on a bus by a male student on an out-of-state band trip in 2017. The lawsuit alleges the school system failed to take the girl’s allegation seriously.

The judge said the school system either destroyed or failed to preserve relevant notes and text messages from their investigation even though it knew it was required to retain them. The school system had created a computer system designed to retain such evidence after it reached a 2014 settlement with the U.S. Department of Education over allegations that it failed to properly investigate a sexual harassment allegation.

Lawyers for the student, who is identified only as Jane Doe, say they have strong reason to believe that the missing notes and text messages may be helpful to their case, because some messages they were able to obtain indicate that school officials were joking about the allegation. One official sent a text message after learning of the allegation saying “one time on a band trip” — a reference to the film “American Pie,” in which the characters engage in a running joke about sexual activity at band camp.

“Fairfax County Public Schools’ destruction or loss of evidence in this case — acknowledged by the court today — is appalling,” said Adele Kimmel, one of Doe’s lawyers and a senior attorney with Public Justice, a legal advocacy group. “This destruction or loss of key evidence is just one more example of the school district’s failure to follow the law.”

Lawyers for the school system had argued that the notes and text messages may have become misplaced during school renovations, and also argued that they weren’t on notice that the girl would file a lawsuit and that the documents would be needed until it was too late.

Fairfax County Public Schools issued a statement Friday night saying it will appeal the ruling.

“FCPS respectfully disagrees with the judge’s ruling on both the facts and the law,” the school system said. “The documents in question were inadvertently lost months before we were aware of any threatened lawsuit from the plaintiff.”

Neither the girl nor the boy was punished by school officials, who concluded in their investigation that the sexual contact was consensual. In court papers, the school system says it did not believe the girl’s accusation of an assault in part because she initially expressed concern about getting in trouble for her conduct.

Under the sanctions imposed Friday by Nachmanoff, Jane Doe’s lawyers will be able to tell the jury at trial that the school system lost or destroyed relevant documents, and that the jury will be allowed “to infer that those documents would be detrimental to defendant’s case.”

Jane Doe’s lawsuit is one of three filed in federal court in 2018 and 2019 accusing Fairfax County Public Schools of botching sex-harassment investigations. The other two were filed by boys who say they were unfairly punished on false accusations by female students. One of those cases has been dismissed, and the other remains ongoing.

Source

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Judge sanctions Fairfax school system in sexual misconduct lawsuit

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A federal judge on Friday sanctioned Virginia’s largest school system for destroying or failing to preserve documents relevant to a lawsuit accusing school officials of ignoring a girl’s claim she was sexually assaulted.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael Nachmanoff in Alexandria imposed the sanctions Friday on the Fairfax County School Board as it prepares to defend its actions in a trial scheduled for next month.

An Oakton High School student says she was sexually assaulted on a bus by a male student on an out-of-state band trip in 2017. The lawsuit alleges the school system failed to take the girl’s allegation seriously.

The judge said the school system either destroyed or failed to preserve relevant notes and text messages from their investigation even though it knew it was required to retain them. The school system had created a computer system designed to retain such evidence after it reached a 2014 settlement with the U.S. Department of Education over allegations that it failed to properly investigate a sexual harassment allegation.

Lawyers for the student, who is identified only as Jane Doe, say they have strong reason to believe that the missing notes and text messages may be helpful to their case, because some messages they were able to obtain indicate that school officials were joking about the allegation. One official sent a text message after learning of the allegation saying “one time on a band trip” — a reference to the film “American Pie,” in which the characters engage in a running joke about sexual activity at band camp.

“Fairfax County Public Schools’ destruction or loss of evidence in this case — acknowledged by the court today — is appalling,” said Adele Kimmel, one of Doe’s lawyers and a senior attorney with Public Justice, a legal advocacy group. “This destruction or loss of key evidence is just one more example of the school district’s failure to follow the law.”

Lawyers for the school system had argued that the notes and text messages may have become misplaced during school renovations, and also argued that they weren’t on notice that the girl would file a lawsuit and that the documents would be needed until it was too late.

Fairfax County Public Schools issued a statement Friday night saying it will appeal the ruling.

“FCPS respectfully disagrees with the judge’s ruling on both the facts and the law,” the school system said. “The documents in question were inadvertently lost months before we were aware of any threatened lawsuit from the plaintiff.”

Neither the girl nor the boy was punished by school officials, who concluded in their investigation that the sexual contact was consensual. In court papers, the school system says it did not believe the girl’s accusation of an assault in part because she initially expressed concern about getting in trouble for her conduct.

Under the sanctions imposed Friday by Nachmanoff, Jane Doe’s lawyers will be able to tell the jury at trial that the school system lost or destroyed relevant documents, and that the jury will be allowed “to infer that those documents would be detrimental to defendant’s case.”

Jane Doe’s lawsuit is one of three filed in federal court in 2018 and 2019 accusing Fairfax County Public Schools of botching sex-harassment investigations. The other two were filed by boys who say they were unfairly punished on false accusations by female students. One of those cases has been dismissed, and the other remains ongoing.

Source

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Top brass exit Nature Conservancy amid sexual harassment investigation

Westlake Legal Group f24b316e-1732-4d2b-a3c2-e81e384165f3 Top brass exit Nature Conservancy amid sexual harassment investigation workplace misconduct The Blog sexual misconduct sexual harassment Nature Conservatory Mary Kay inc. #metoo

#MeToo strikes again. This time it is within the world’s leading conservation organization, the Nature Conservancy. The first to exit the organization due to an investigation into sexual harassment and workplace misconduct were Mark Burget, head of the group’s North American operations, and Kacky Andrews, who led global programs.

As an email announced the departures, the group’s president, Brian McPeek returned to his role after taking a “less active” role in the organization during the investigation. The plan at the end of May was for McPeek to remain as the president. The CEO, Mark Tercek, addressed the complaints from female employees.

The moves laid out in the memo follow the conclusion of an internal investigation of the organization’s workplace culture by the law firm McDermott Will & Emery. Tercek wrote that the investigation revealed that female employees believed The Nature Conservancy’s “culture can make it difficult for women to thrive.”

That investigation found that “[s]pecifically, in several instances where there were serious allegations of misconduct, TNC opted for no or minor discipline because TNC perceived the event as ‘he said/she said’ with no corroborating evidence. In these instances, the accused was given the benefit of the doubt,” the report said.

The report said The Nature Conservancy must update how it “approaches investigating these claims.” It faulted the organization for failing to adequately investigate anonymous claims made through its employee hotline, insufficiently training employees on how to conduct themselves — especially in the presence of alcohol and off-site — and providing too little reporting about harassment complaints to the board.

“[N]umerous employees who contacted the hotline or McDermott’s investigator reported that TNC is a male-dominated culture where it is difficult for women to flourish,” the report said.

The initial reporting caught my eye because up until all this was exposed, I thought of the organization as a solid, non-controversial kind of charitable operation. Founded in 1951, it’s known for doing good work to preserve land and water around the world while not going off the deep end like some other younger organizations who specialize in capturing headlines due to aggressive activism. (Looking at you, Greenpeace.) Its board of directors includes former politicians and public figures from both sides of the political aisle.

As happens these days, the investigation began after a series of tweets were posted about complaints that were made between May 2014 and March 2018 on the organization’s hotline. A victim came forward and was declared credible in her claim that an executive kissed her at a conference in 2010. The executive denied it. She was concerned that the Nature Conservancy ignored the complaints from her and other women. The law firm interviewed 34 people. 32 of the interviewees were former and current employees and 29 were women.

Also discovered by the investigation was a romantic relationship between two employees – identified as Executive No. 2 and Executive No. 3 – who didn’t disclose the relationship in a timely fashion as required by the organization’s policy.

McDermott also wrote that two other executives — identified as Executives 2 and 3 in the report — began a romantic relationship without disclosing it to The Nature Conservancy in a timely manner as the organization’s policy required. Executive No. 3 reported to executive No. 2, who was responsible for her performance review and recommended a 15 percent raise, which she received. Executive No. 2 also endorsed No. 3 for an executive committee spot, which Tercek granted, the report said.

The report found that both the raise and recommendation to the executive committee position were “a conflict of interest,” and that while the two eventually disclosed their relationship after a “thirteen-month delay,” they both were “dishonest about the status of their relationship.” Executive No. 2’s influence in executive No. 3’s executive committee post, review and raise came during the period when they were in an undisclosed relationship, the report said.

The next head to roll was President Brian McPeek who resigned two days after Burget and Andrews, who I assume are Employee No. 2 and Employee No. 3 because their lawyers deny that they didn’t disclose their relationship properly. CEO Tercek emailed the staff to announce McPeek’s exit.

“Brian McPeek and I jointly agreed that the best way for TNC to move forward at this time is for him to resign. We both think this decision is in the best interest of the organization as well as Brian and his family,” he wrote.

It’s all quite a web, right? Well, hold on. There’s more. Friday CEO Tercek resigned, just a week after McPeek’s exit.

Tercek joined The Nature Conservancy in 2008 from Goldman Sachs. He sought to bring Wall Street-style practices to the massive environmental organization, which racked up $1.3 billion in revenue in 2018 and holds billions in assets. Under him, the group cemented partnerships with some of the world’s biggest multinational corporations as well as wealthy donors and several foreign governments. It also earned bipartisan praise on Capitol Hill for its conservation work.

“It’s been an honor to lead this great organization and its world-class team,” Tercek said in a statement. “In my view, it’s the right time for The Nature Conservancy’s next leader to step up to amplify the momentum we’ve built over the past decade.”

The #MeToo movement seems to have taken a back seat to other news stories lately. The headlines have certainly died off since the beginning of the scandals surfaced. Now we see that there are stories still unfolding and the movement is alive and well.

I’ll end with a little nugget I found. Friday Mary Kay, Inc., an original glass ceiling breaker among corporations offering opportunities to women, announced it has partnered with the Nature Conservancy in a program called the Texas Fisheries & Coastal Resilience Program. (Mary Kay was founded in Dallas and corporate headquarters are still there.) The program “aims to tackle problems like overfishing, habitat damage, and bycatch—the incidental capture of non-target species during commercial fishing.”

“Mary Kay has long worked to impact change that will sustain the earth for generations to come, and we’re proud to be partnering with an organization so aligned in mission to double down on our work in ensuring a healthy and thriving Gulf ecosystem,” said Laura Huffman, Texas regional director of The Nature Conservancy. “This investment in our program will not only move the needle in terms of science, policy and community-collaboration, but will help us prove that we don’t have to choose between ecological health and economic prosperity – what we’re doing is helping people and nature thrive, together.”

Not to sound cynical but it’s a clever move by the Nature Conservancy to partner with such a well-known business that caters to bettering the lives of women as the organization deals with its #MeToo problem.

The post Top brass exit Nature Conservancy amid sexual harassment investigation appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group f24b316e-1732-4d2b-a3c2-e81e384165f3-300x153 Top brass exit Nature Conservancy amid sexual harassment investigation workplace misconduct The Blog sexual misconduct sexual harassment Nature Conservatory Mary Kay inc. #metoo   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Will new Vatican law set off a reporting “avalanche” on abuses and cover-ups?

Westlake Legal Group will-new-vatican-law-set-off-a-reporting-avalanche-on-abuses-and-cover-ups Will new Vatican law set off a reporting “avalanche” on abuses and cover-ups? Vatican The Blog sexual misconduct sexual abuse Pope Francis Catholic Church bishops

Westlake Legal Group pope-francis-thinking Will new Vatican law set off a reporting “avalanche” on abuses and cover-ups? Vatican The Blog sexual misconduct sexual abuse Pope Francis Catholic Church bishops

With sexual abuse allegations now reaching into the episcopacy, the Vatican has struggled to define courses of action when bishops and cardinals are accused of committing sexual abuse or covering up such crimes for others. Today, Pope Francis issued an edict for all ordained and consecrated within the Catholic Church requiring reporting on any abuse, if need be directly to the Vatican itself. Local dioceses will also be required to create reporting systems and get the laity involved in them:

Pope Francis introduced sweeping changes in Catholic Church law on Thursday to hold bishops accountable for sexual abuse or covering it up, making reporting obligatory for clerics and allowing anyone to complain directly to the Vatican if needed.

A papal decree, which covers abuse of both children and adults, also obliges every Catholic diocese in the world to set up simple and accessible reporting systems and encourages local churches to involve lay experts in investigations. …

It sets time limits for local investigations and the Vatican’s response to them and allows for retroactive reporting.

It also says bishops with conflicts of interest should recuse themselves from investigations and that they can also be held accountable for abuse of power in sexual relations with adults.

The motu proprio, entitled Vos Estis Lux Mundi (You Are the Light of the World), covers a wide range of malfeasance — sexual abuse of minors, sexual abuse of vulnerable people, child pornography, and so on. It raises the age of majority in such cases from 16 to 18, and gives a relatively succinct process for reporting and investigating. Much of this has been covered with the laity through such processes as VIRTUS for volunteer ministries, but this escalates it to legal status with nuns, brothers, and the ordained — all the way to the Vatican itself.

The most significant part of the motu proprio is its Title II — Provisions Concerning Bishops and Their Equivalents. This sets out formally for the first time the processes to be used when bishops are accused of sexual misconduct. Such reports have to go to the metropolitan bishop (archbishop) in the jurisdiction, or if it involves the metropolitan, and also directly to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. The new law encourages metropolitans to seek out lay experts for any investigations and lays out some basic whistleblower protections.

How effective will this be? Much of Vos Estis Lux Mundi consists of basic organizational crisis procedures, similar to what one might find in a corporate sexual-harassment process. In fact, most of it is just plain common sense, which underscores how overdue this motu proprio is. It does not spell out any new forms of punishment for those found to have engaged in sexual misconduct or for those who cover it up. That might be a bit too ambiguous for some critics, especially given Francis’ inconsistent approach, but penalties do already exist in canon law in both cases.

Still, establishing these procedures might allow for an “avalanche” of new reporting, the Washington Post notes:

The law makes the world’s 415,000 Catholic priests and 660,000 religious sisters mandated reporters. That means they are required to inform church authorities when they learn or have “well-founded motives to believe” that a cleric or sister has engaged in sexual abuse of a minor, sexual misconduct with an adult, possession of child pornography — or that a superior has covered up any of those crimes.

The law doesn’t require them to report to police. The Vatican has long argued that doing so could endanger the church in places where Catholics are a persecuted minority. But it does for the first time put into universal church law that they must obey civil reporting requirements where they live, and that their obligation to report to the church in no way interferes with that.

If it is implemented fully, the Vatican could well see an avalanche of abuse and cover-up reports in the coming years. Since the law is procedural and not criminal in nature, it can be applied retroactively, meaning priests and nuns are now required to report even old cases of sexual wrongdoing and cover-ups — and enjoy whistleblower protections for doing so.

Previously such reporting was left up to the conscience of individual priests and nuns. Now it is church law. There are no punitive measures foreseen if they fail to report, and similarly there are no sanctions foreseen if dioceses, for example, fail to comply. But bishops and religious superiors could be accused of cover-up or negligence if they fail to implement the provisions, or retaliate against priests and nuns who make reports.

At this point one would hope that the skeletons would have all exited the closet, but of course that’s not the case. State attorneys general have opened up their own investigations after the success in Pennsylvania in exposing hundreds of abusers; we can expect to hear a lot more over the next couple of years from those processes. The Vatican has made it possible to get ahead of that curve with this new law, or at least to encourage people in the local dioceses to start catching up.

At this point, the pontiff and the Vatican Curia must have belatedly realized that it’s better to finally rip off the bandage as fast as possible than go through a slow torture over several decades. And that’s a step long overdue, too.

The post Will new Vatican law set off a reporting “avalanche” on abuses and cover-ups? appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group pope-francis-thinking-300x173 Will new Vatican law set off a reporting “avalanche” on abuses and cover-ups? Vatican The Blog sexual misconduct sexual abuse Pope Francis Catholic Church bishops   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com