ABC News confirmed Wednesday that it is conducting an investigation into the leaking of a video that shows anchor Amy Robach accusing network executives of spiking her report on alleged serial pedophile Jeffrey Epstein several years ago.
“We take violations of company policy very seriously, and we’re pursuing all avenues to determine the source of the leak,” a spokesman for the company told journalist Yashar Ali.
ABC also said that it had identified the former employee who accessed the video of Robach. The network said it wasn’t sure whether that employee had leaked the video directly to right-wing activist group Project Veritas, which published the footage, or shared it with someone else who then leaked it to Project Veritas. The former employee subsequently moved to a job at CBS.
After ABC executives informed their counterparts at CBS of the employee’s actions, CBS fired the employee Thursday morning, according to Ali.
Robach was caught on a hot mic in August alleging that ABC executives killed her reporting on Epstein in 2016 due to fears that the report would endanger the network’s chance access to British royals Prince Harry and spouse Kate Middleton. Epstein accuser Virginia Roberts, whom Robach interviewed for the story, claims she was forced to perform sex acts on Prince Andrew, the second son of Queen Elizabeth II, when she was 17 years old.
“I had this interview with [Epstein victim] Virginia Roberts; we would not put it on the air,” Robach said. “The [British royal] Palace found out that we had her whole allegations about Prince Andrew and threatened us a million different ways.”
ABC has said it will not give on-air coverage to the controversy surrounding Robach’s remarks.
ABC and Robach released statements after the video was leaked in which both claimed Robach’s report on Epstein failed to meet ABC’s reportorial standards. However, Robach claimed in the video that she had corroborating accounts from multiple victims in addition to photo and video evidence to back up her report.