It appears the fallout from Seven boss Tim Worner’s extra-marital affair simply won’t go away despite an independent report by the network released last Friday clearing the CEO of any wrongdoing.
The review, by law firm Allens, debunked claims by Worner’s former mistress, Amber Harrison (pictured above), that he had multiple extramarital affairs with Seven employees and used drugs – namely cocaine. The affair with Harrison – that Worner has conceded to – happened before he was made CEO.
However, it appears Harrison is having none of it. The Australian Financial Review is this morning reporting that as soon as Allens’ report was released Harrison made complaints to The Australian Securities and Investments Commissions (ASIC) and the Australia Securities Exchange (ASX) alleging untruths and that it breached corporate regulation.
In her complaint, Harrison said: “Seven West Media released a factually incorrect statement to market today and have been trading on this incorrect information,” The AFR has reported.
Harrison has described the report as a “whitewash” and “designed to achieve the predetermined outcome it has delivered”.
A media statement of Allens’ outcomes was released last Friday, however, the actual final report won’t be released as Seven claims legal privilege.
What Harrison’s motives are unclear, however, she has reportedly spent most of the $350,000 termination payout she was paid by Seven on legal fees. It has been reported in some media that she is seeking as much as $2 million in compensation – citing false dismissal and mental health issues.
Interestingly, the day before the report was released, Seven West director Sheila McGregor – a partner and the law firm Gilbert + Tobin – suddenly resigned. Seven gave no explanation for McGregor’s departure, however, there had been media reports she was uncomfortable about the corporate governance of the Seven board which has stood by Worner throughout the scandal.
Over the weekend, former Victorian Premier and Seven board member, Jeff Kennett, defended the board’s decision to “stand strong” behind Tim Worner while criticising Harrison for attempting to drag other Seven employees into the scandal.
In an interview with The Australian, Kennett said: “We’ve done all we can. I’m absolutely convinced on the evidence we have investigated.
“The board has spent an inordinate amount of time trying to prove up the allegations made in Ms Harrison’s statement in December, and further comments she has made since. We have had endless meetings and employed independent forensic investigators at great cost to the shareholders, and the board stands strongly behind the statement that we put out to the ASX,” he said.