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Moonves Schemed to Silence Accuser With Acting Roles: Report

Former CBS chief executive Les Moonves attempted to offer acting roles to a woman who’d accused him of sexual assault in an effort to silence her, The New York Times reports. In the wake of the impending New Yorker expose on Moonves’ alleged sexual misconduct, the ex-CBS CEO and talent manager Marv Dauer schemed to prevent actress Bobby Phillips from coming forward with her story, according to the bombshell report. Moonves allegedly exposed himself to Phillips and forced her to perform oral sex when they met to discuss potential acting opportunities in 1995. In a phone call to Dauer, Moonves allegedly said,  “…if Bobbie talks, I’m done.” Text messages between Dauer and Moonves—which were obtained by the Times—show Moonves asking Dauer whether Phillips would remain quiet. At one point, Phillips was offered a role by CBS for $1,500 per day—but she rejected it. After the New Yorker expose came out, the role’s pay was increased by $5,000. Phillips declined to take it. “I didn’t care about this particular role, and yet top CBS brass suddenly are eager for me to accept it,” Phillips told the newspaper. “It all seemed so baffling to me.”

When the CBS board reportedly learned about Moonves’ efforts to get Phillips a role, the revelation prompted lawyers to recommend that he be put on leave. According to Moonves’ severance package, he would be ineligible for a $120 million payment if he lied to CBS’s investigators. A source told the newspaper that CBS lawyers recently found out that Moonves had deleted his text messages to Dauer from his iPad.