Deposed Fox News boss Roger Ailes threatened violence against a reporter who has exposed many of his misdeeds.
A source close to high-level Fox executives told Politico that Ailes bragged that he could hire someone to physically assault Gabriel Sherman, the author and New York magazine reporter who profiled him in the 2014 book, “The Loudest Voice in the Room.”
“I know where he lives, and I’m gonna send people to beat the shit out of him,” the source told Politico.
Two other sources confirmed hearing the same account.
One of those sources told the website that Ailes’ campaign against Sherman might have been a criminal conspiracy.
“If it ever came out, multiple people at Fox would go to jail,” the source said.
Sherman and his wife, Jennifer Stahl, an associate editor at Pro Publica, considered having their apartment swept for listening devices.
Sources told Sherman, in a report published over the weekend, that Ailes spent Fox News budgetary funds to maintain an office he used to spy on reporters and other critics and run negative public relations campaigns against them.
Sherman reported that Ailes targeted journalists John Cook and Hamilton Nolan from Gawker, and CNN’s Brian Stetler said he once dated a woman who turned out to be a spy from Fox News sent to keep tabs on the rival network’s reporting.
Sources also told Sherman that he had been the target of one of those operations in 2012, while reporting the Ailes biography.
“Fox operatives set up webpages to attack my reputation, and Fox funds paid for Google search ads against my name that linked to the sites,” Sherman wrote. “One source also said private investigators employed by Fox contributor Bo Dietl were instructed to follow me and my wife.”
Dietl’s firm was also used to track Andrea Mackris, the producer who accused Bill O’Reilly of sexual harassment in 2004.
In addition to Dietl, a former New York City Police detective, Ailes also used current NYPD officers to conduct countersurveillance against individuals he suspected of tracking his actions, according to Politico.