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Comcast exec pressured CNBC reporter for sex, complaint reveal

The complaint went on to detail systemic harassment and bullying of female colleagues by others at CNBC, according to the New York Times.

The complaint went on to detail systemic harassment and bullying of female colleagues by others at CNBC, according to the New York Times.

A complaint filed by a CNBC correspondent earlier this year accused a former Comcast executive of pressuring her into a sexual relationship, behavior that ultimately led to his surprise dismissal late last month, according to a new report.

The New York Times said it reviewed a copy of the complaint filed with Comcast’s human relations department by CNBC correspondent Hadley Gamble in March, which contained numerous allegations against NBC Universal Chief Executive Officer Jeff Shell and spanned more than a dozen pages.

The newspaper said Gamble’s accusations of sexual harassment comprised a small part of her overall complaint, which included charges of workplace bullying and harassment at CNBC by Shell and others who were not named in the story.

Shell was fired with cause by Comcast in late April after an outside investigator was able to corroborate some allegations of sexual harassment made by Gamble. The probe was complicated in part by the fact that Shell and Gamble had a consensual, though adulterous on Shell’s part, relationship more than a decade ago. But the allegations were ultimately proven when e-mail records showed Shell continued to pressure Gamble for sex long after the affair ended.

Comcast did not pay Shell severance in connection with his firing. Shell has not legally contested his dismissal or Comcast’s decision to not award him an exit package.

“I had an inappropriate relationship with a woman in the company, which I deeply regret,” Shell said in a statement last month. “I’m truly sorry I let my Comcast and NBC Universal colleagues down, they are the most talented people in the business and the opportunity to work with them the last 19 years has been a privilege.”

Comcast has not named a successor to Shell’s position. Until a replacement CEO is named, Shell’s immediate team will report to Cavanagh, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Gamble continues to work as a senior international correspondent for CNBC, with her last assignment at CNBC’s Middle East headquarters in Abu Dhabi.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).