Former news anchor Ed Henry is suing Fox News and its CEO Suzanne Scott after he was fired from the network due to a sexual misconduct complaint. Henry is alleging defamation, claiming that Scott labeled him as a “criminal.”

The suit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey, says that Scott used Henry as a “scapegoat to divert attention away from her own sordid history at Fox News.”

On July 1, 2020, Fox News distributed a memo signed by Scott and Fox News president Jay Wallace to staff that clarified the reasoning behind Henry’s dismissal. They said that they made the decision based on evidence from an investigation by an independent law firm. The investigation came in response to a complaint filed by a “former employee’s attorney involving willful sexual misconduct in the workplace years ago.”

It was later revealed that former associate producer on Fox Business Jennifer Eckhart had accused 49-year-old Henry of multiple instances of sexual assault and rape. The former anchor denied the accusations but was fired from the network after the independent investigation.

Henry’s lawyers, however, said that Scott ignored “overwhelming evidence” that would have disproven the allegations. His legal counsel said in a statement, “Scott made the allegations despite overwhelming evidence — already in her possession — that the accusations against Ed were false. We believe she preemptively offered up Mr. Henry as a scapegoat.”

Henry’s lawyer added that Scott “threw Ed under the bus to burnish her image as the tough female executive who cleaned up Fox News,” ignoring the “texts, emails, and photographs” that would’ve proved his innocence.

This is not the first time that Henry has faced sexual assault allegations. Cathy Areu has also claimed he raped her multiple times.

Henry’s lawyer at the time, Catherine Foti, denied the allegations and said that their relationship was consensual.

Last year, Foti said, “The evidence, in this case, will demonstrate that Ms. Eckhart initiated and completely encouraged a consensual relationship. Ed Henry looks forward to presenting actual facts and evidence, which will contradict the fictional accounts contained in the complaint. That evidence includes graphic photos and other aggressively suggestive communications that Ms. Eckhart sent to Mr. Henry.”

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