Thursday, June 22, 2017

What Did CBS' Les Moonves Know And When Did He Know It

Moonves, Redstone
CBS chairman Leslie Moonves will be dragged into the legal drama surrounding Sumner Redstone after all, as a California judge switched gears after tentatively granting a motion to quash a subpoena served to him.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the 94-year-old Redstone is suing two of his former companions for elder abuse, and is seeking to reclaim millions in gifts he'd given them. Both Sydney Holland and Manuela Herzer are also currently suing his daughter Shari Redstone for interfering with their inheritances — and now his business activities may be scrutinized and Moonves will join the fray.

Shari Redstone
Holland and Herzer in the fall of 2015 were each ejected from the elder Redstone's Beverly Park estate and his life. They maintain Shari orchestrated the ouster by enlisting her father's household staff to spy on them.

Herzer fired first in court, alleging that Redstone was being unduly influenced by his daughter and lacked the competency necessary to revoke her control over his health care directive. Los Angeles Superior Court judge David J. Cowan tossed that matter mid-trial, after a video of Redstone's deposition showed him calling Herzer "a f—ing bitch." She responded with a $100 million spying suit against Shari. Holland sued on similar claims in December, after the elder abuse suit was filed.

During last year's fight over Redstone's health care directive, court documents revealed his funeral plans — which included a eulogy by Moonves. In that same probate matter, the court gave Herzer the green light to depose then-Viacom chief Philippe Dauman.

Holland wants to subpoena Moonves, as well as CBS and Viacom, claiming the exec has knowledge about Redstone's romantic relationships that is relevant to allegations that she manipulated him out of millions.

Redstone flanked by Manuela Herzer and Sydney Holland
Variety reports Holland’s attorneys subpoenaed Moonves in March. Redstone’s attorneys moved to quash the subpoena the following month, arguing that the request was overly broad and was designed to “harass and embarrass Sumner and Moonves.”

On Wednesday, Judge Robert Hess sided with Holland, ruling that her attorneys will be able to seek the documents. The judge also allowed her attorneys to seek documents from Viacom and CBS related to Redstone’s oversight of the two companies between 2010 and 2016.

Holland’s attorneys believe the records will show that Redstone was mentally fit enough to manage two large public companies, undermining the argument that he unwittingly handed over millions of dollars to his ex-companions.

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