Fox News fires Bill O'Reilly after sexual harassment accusations

Tonight Show: Bill O'Reilly's Demands for Future GOP Presidential Debates

Tonight Show: Bill O'Reilly's Demands for Future GOP Presidential Debates

The network's most popular personality was sacked after a New York Time report earlier this month that said five women had been paid $13 million in settlements after they alleged sexual harassment and mistreatment.

"After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the Company and Bill O'Reilly have agreed that he will not be returning to the Fox News Channel", Efe news agency quoted the network's parent company as saying in a statement.

Off-camera unseen forces raged against him, culminating in Fox News Channel's admission today that O'Reilly is getting the boot. O'Reilly was photographed in Rome shaking Pope Francis' hand on Wednesday.

The New York Times reported April 1 that five women had been paid a total of $13 million to keep quiet about unpleasant encounters with O'Reilly, who has denied any wrongdoing.

O'Reilly said in the statement at the time that he had settled only to spare his children from the controversy.

O'Reilly's lawyers said he was the victim of an orchestrated campaign by liberal organizations like Media Matters for America, which contacted his advertisers to pressure them to leave the show.

It was a stunning fall from grace for one of the biggest United States media names, a veteran broadcaster at Fox News for two decades, who counted President Donald Trump among his personal supporters and whose ratings had soared regardless of alleged abusive behavior towards women dating back years.

Carlson sued Roger Ailes, alleging harassment and retaliation, in July, 21st Century Fox reached a $20 million settlement with her and issued a public apology. In January, he filled in Megyn Kelly's spot who described her departure from the network for NBC as a "tough decision". That's why I think it's important to give a lot of credit to [former Fox News anchor] Gretchen Carlson for coming out and really being the person who started this conversation.

The news was also addressed during O'Reilly's old 8 p.m. hour, which on-screen graphics called "The Factor".

O'Reilly's departure will not have any effect on Twenty-First Century Fox's overall profitability, said Brian Wieser, an analyst at Pivotal Research. "The O'Reilly Factor" has generated a huge ad bonanza for Fox, one that yielded more than $178 million in 2015.

"And I was told basically, 'Well, you know, Bill".

It's also home to ambitions that the O'Reilly crisis may have hindered.

O'Reilly and co-author Martin Dugard are due to release another book in the "Killing" series in September, and a spokeswoman for publisher Henry Holt and Co. said that plans had not changed.

O'Reilly met the Pope in a VIP line at the Vatican and shook hands with the Catholic leader. Yesterday, an African American woman who worked as a clerical worker in 2008 at Fox News, claimed O'Reilly engaged in a pattern of harassment that lasted for months including making animal noises at her, staring at her cleavage and calling her "hot chocolate".