Fox Business host Charles Payne suspended amid sexual harassment probe

Breaking Fox News slapped with more sexual harassment accusations anchor suspended

A Fox Business Network host has been suspended after a contributor reportedly accused him of sexual harassment. The woman told her lawyer she made several unsuccessful attempts to report the matter to former Fox News executive Bill Shine, who was head of programming till May 1, the L.A. Times reported.

Charles Payne, host of the network's "Making Money" show, defended himself on Twitter on Friday.

Fox Business announced last month that it had renewed Mr. Payne's contract with the network in a multiyear deal.

The Times quotes Fox Business Network as saying boasting of "a zero-tolerance policy for any professional misconduct". "This matter is being thoroughly investigated and we are taking all of the appropriate steps to reach a resolution in a timely manner", the cable news network said in a statement.

The woman in question - a "frequent guest" on Fox Business, according to The Washington Post ― claims she engaged in an extramartial affair with Payne for three years "under threat of reprisals" if she refused him, the Times reported. Hughes claims that her appearances were reduced dramatically after she ended the affair with Payne in 2015 and reported Payne's behavior to Fox.

The suspension of Mr. Payne came after The National Enquirer published an article on Wednesday in which he acknowledged and apologized for an extramarital affair with a former CNN and Fox News contributor. She alleges that Payne threatened unfavorable consequences if she did not acquiesce.

As of now, Payne's lawyer Neal Koval, has claimed that the host denies having had any sexual contact with Hughes, yet the case is still under investigation.

Payne, 56, has been an on-air personality on Fox Business throughout the last 10 years, dating back to the channel's launch in 2007.

The accusations are the latest in a series of allegations of sexual misconduct at Fox. In 2016, Fox News founder Roger Ailes, now deceased, had to resign from the network amid multiple allegations of sexually predatory behavior, and O'Reilly's departure followed in early 2017.