Harvey Weinstein tried to intimidate his staffers into not cooperating with an independent investigation of sexual harassment allegations against him, a source confirmed to Variety.
Weinstein’s conduct, according to the source, was among the reasons the company’s board of directors moved to fire him on Sunday.
“Mr. Weinstein unequivocally denies these allegations,” a spokesperson said.
The board has accused Weinstein of breaching the company’s code of ethics, but have not clarified what the breach was. On Friday, the board hired John Kiernan, a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, to investigate claims that Weinstein sexually harassed actresses, staffers and others over the course of three decades. The claims were made in a New York Times expose on Thursday.
Weinstein has responded by apologizing and promising to get therapy, but has also disputed many of the specific claims and threatened to sue the paper.
Kiernan, who is president of the New York City Bar Association, is a veteran of many corporate disputes and internal probes.
Weinstein was fired this weekend for cause, before Kiernan’s work could even get underway. Meanwhile, other women have come forward since the New York Times’ story to report that they, too, were victims of Weinstein’s harassment.