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Adrienne Lawrence

Legal analyst, law professor & award-winning author

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While admirable, CBS-Les Moonves leaker is unfit to practice law

May 24, 2023

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The anonymous source who provided information to The New York Times about the misconduct of former CBS CEO Les Moonves was identified on May 18. The source, Allison Diercks, was an attorney who worked for the law firm hired by CBS to conduct the sexual harassment inquiry against Moonves.

Adrienne Lawrence, Straight Arrow News contributor and author of a book about workplace sexual harassment explains why, despite her admirable action, Diercks should be barred from practicing law.

As attorneys, we’re not just advocates but full-blown stand-in representatives. We are the embodiment of our clients, conduits operating on their behalf — absolute loyalty is vital. And yeah, there are very limited circumstances where you can break privilege, such as when your client tells you they’re intending to commit a crime, a la Donald Trump and his many attorney-client privileged endeavors. But beyond that, you take your client secrets to the grave. Diercks didn’t do that. She elevated her moral judgment above her duty to CBS. You can’t do that and hold a license.

I’ve represented criminals. I’ve helped people, you know, deal with a host of issues. And if I’m not comfortable with the issue at hand, and I couldn’t zealously advocate for the client in good conscience, I pass on the representation. Those are the rules. Diercks should have passed on CBS rather than passing judgment on how she thought they [did] not act.

Now, I won’t pretend Les Moonves wasn’t putting down some big predator vibes. Harassment-hunter Ronan Farrow documented ample details of harassment, intimidation, and harm at the hands of the CEO as told by a litany of women; women who lost their economic independence, sense of physical safety, sense of self and so much more, because one man didn’t have enough power while sitting atop of one of the world’s largest media empires.

And of course, we’d later learn of the New York Attorney General’s Office successfully suing CBS executives and Moonves for conspiring with the LAPD to conceal credible sexual assault allegations against him. The man was filth in a Luca Faloni suit. Even so while I am certain what Diercks did was right, she betrayed her oath at its core. And for that reason, just like Moonves, she got to be out of a job.

We finally learned what led to one of the biggest me to take downs in media. If you recall, CDs basically ousted Les Moonves after a damning New York Times expos a in 2018, revealed that the former CEO engaged in unspeakable acts of harassment. And as it turns out, the times got the intel from an attorney named Alison Dierkes, whose firm CDs had hired to investigate the allegations against Moonves. That’s right, CBS was her client for breaching attorney client privilege. She lost her license to practice law. Why did your ex do it? Well, she said she decided to contact the times that have concerned that CBS might not act on the evidence that she and others had uncovered. Now, while what Dirks did was incredibly admirable, professionally costly, and likely saved many women’s careers, she shouldn’t be allowed to practice law again. Yeah, that is a hell of a thing for me to say. Not only am I an attorney, but also a workplace sexual harassment whistleblower, author of an award winning book on the subject, big talker about workplace inclusivity for women, even sell the sanctity of attorney client privilege rises far higher than any titles I hold gender ibehre or experiences I have had. It’s essential that clients be able to trust their counsel to be able to open their soul and bear their mistakes without fear of having their business out on the streets. If a client couldn’t trust their attorney, that means they couldn’t fully APPRISE themselves, of all of the aspects of our legal system, which is the fundamental channel that governs our lives in this society. If you’re not picking up what I’m putting down I am saying attorney client privilege is BFD stuff. As attorneys. We’re not just advocates but full blown standing representatives. We are the embodiment of our clients conduits operating on their behalf. absolute loyalty is vital. And yeah, there are very limited circumstances where you can break privilege, such as when your client tells you they’re intending to commit a crime. I love Donald Trump and his many attorney client privileged endeavors. But beyond that, you take your client secret to the grave. Dirks didn’t do that she elevated her moral judgment above her duty to CDs. You can’t do that and hold a license. I’ve represented criminals. I’ve helped people, you know, deal with a host of issues. And if I’m not comfortable with the issue at hand, and I couldn’t zealously advocate for the client in good conscience, I pass on the representation. Those are the rules. Dirk should have passed on CDs rather than passing judgment on how she thought they’d not act. Now. I won’t pretend Les Moonves wasn’t putting down some big predator vibes. harass all Hunter Ronan Farrow documented ample details of harassment, intimidation, and harm at the hands of the CEO was told by a litany of women, women who lost their economic independence, sense of physical safety, sense of self and so much more. Because one man didn’t have enough power while sitting atop of one of the world’s largest media empires. And of course, we later learn of the New York Attorney General’s Office successfully suing CBS executives and Moonves for conspiring with the LAPD to conceal credible sexual assault allegations against him. The man was filmed in a Luka Fulani suit. Even so while I am certain what Dirks did was right. She betrayed her oath at its core. And for that reason, just like Moonves she got to be out of a job.

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