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Former Fox employee alleges in a new lawsuit that Tucker Carlson's 'right-hand man' Justin Wells sexually assaulted him, and retaliated against him after he declined his advances

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A former Fox News producer alleged in a new lawsuit that the media company perpetuated a culture of sexual harassment that enabled him to be abused by a supervisor.Kevin Hagen/Getty Images
  • A former employee is suing Fox News and a former superior over an alleged 2008 sexual assault.

  • Andrew Delancey accused Justin Wells, Tucker Carlson's former executive producer, of sexual abuse.

  • The lawsuit details how a "culture of sexual harassment" at Fox enabled Delancey's assault.

A former Fox News employee alleged in a new lawsuit that Justin Wells — Tucker Carlson's former producer and "right-hand man" —sexually assaulted him and retaliated against him after he declined his advances.

Andrew Delancey filed the complaint against Wells and Fox News on Monday under New York's Adult Survivor's Act, which provided a one-year window for survivors of sexual abuse to file civil suits against their alleged assailants even if the statute of limitations had passed.

According to the suit, Delancey accepted a producer position at Fox News Edge in New York in 2008, where he began regularly interacting with Wells, who held a much more senior position at the company. Delancey said in the lawsuit that Wells showered him with gifts upon his arrival and repeatedly told him that he could help boost Delancey's career due to his high status at the company.

Wells, at the time, was a senior producer for "On the Record with Greta Van Susteren."

Delancey alleged in the filing that one night in 2008, Wells lured him to his apartment under the guise of meeting up with coworkers, where he sexually assaulted him.

Delancey in the lawsuit accused Wells of throwing him against the bed, forcing his tongue down his throat, attempting to unbutton his pants, and aggressively grabbing his groin, causing him "severe pain." After Delancey was eventually able to force Wells off of him, he claims that Wells assaulted him again in the stairwell, at which point Delancey left, according to the filing.

After the alleged assaults, the lawsuit says Wells then retaliated against Delancey, rescinding a recommendation he had previously given Delancey for a higher-paying role at the company.

In a statement to Business Insider, Wells' attorney Harmeet Dhillon said: "This meritless legal action was filed 15 years after the alleged incident and mere days before the extended statute of limitations would have run," adding that Wells "denies the allegations unequivocally, and will contest them vigorously."

According to the complaint, when Delancey went to his then-supervisor about the incident with Wells, his supervisor told him not to go to HR because they couldn't be trusted. The lawsuit says the supervisor himself had a history of sexually harassing his subordinates.

Representatives for Fox News did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider.

Multiple one-time Fox employees, including the former CEO of Fox News, Roger Ailes, as well as several of the network's most prominent past personalities, have been accused of sexual harassment or sexual assault, the suit notes.

"As a general matter, if you believe you've been the victim of a sex crime, you have a moral obligation to alert police, so it doesn't happen to someone else," Tucker Carlson said in a statement emailed to Business Insider by a representative. "If you wait 15 years to cash in with a civil suit, no one should take you seriously. I certainly don't."

Bill O'Reilly settled a sexual harassment case for $32 million in 2017. Fox paid out $12 million to settle a suit based on an ex-producer's claims of sexist harassment on Carlson's show. A case is still ongoing against Ed Henry, who denies accusations that he raped a former associate producer at the network.

"Mr. Delancey claims that Mr. Wells was enabled by Fox's well-known culture of sexual harassment as well as Fox's failure to act on a previous sex-based harassment complaint against Mr. Wells," Delancey's lawyer, Alfredo J. Pelicci, said in a statement emailed to Business Insider, adding that his client "will no longer be intimidated by Justin Wells or Fox."

Read the original article on Business Insider