A federal judge on Wednesday unsealed settlement agreements that former Fox News personality Bill O’Reilly had reached with several women who accused him of sexual harassment, revealing the incredibly restrictive terms O’Reilly enforced on his accusers.
The publication of the settlement agreements came in a defamation lawsuit filed against O’Reilly by Andrea Mackris, Rebecca Gomez Diamond, and Rachel Witlieb Bernstein, three women who reached settlements with the former Fox News host.
The agreements signed by Mackris and Diamond required the women to hand over all recordings and documents related to their case against O’Reilly and if the agreements were breached, the women would have to return all payments from O’Reilly to him and forfeit any future payments. Their settlements also barred them from helping other victims of O’Reilly who might take legal action against him.
As the lawyer representing the three women wrote in a filing accompanying the settlements, Mackris’ agreement “requires Ms. Mackris to lie — even in legal proceedings or under oath — if any evidence becomes public by calling the evidence ‘counterfeit’ or ‘forgeries.’” The agreement also barred Mackris from using the agreement or any information about her experience with O’Reilly in any legal proceedings, and required her to notify O’Reilly of any subpoena she receives and allow him to challenge the subpoena before responding.
In the defamation lawsuit, the women charged that O’Reilly and officials at Fox News called them liars after the New York Times published a report on the settlements O’Reilly paid out to several women.
O’Reilly left Fox News in April 2017 following the New York Times report, but he maintains that the allegations made by several women about his conduct are not true.
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