Gretchen Carlson Says Roger Ailes is Forcing 'Secret Arbitration Proceeding,' Fox CEO Says It's In Her Contract

Carlson is accusing Ailes of trying to force her into private proceedings.

Photo: Richard Drew/AP; Wesley Mann/FOX News via Getty

Gretchen Carlson‘s lawyers have released a statement accusing Fox Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes of attempting to block her from having a public trial.

However Ailes’ attorney countered the statement, saying that there was an arbitration clause in Carlson’s contract.

“Roger Ailes is trying to force this case into a secret arbitration proceeding. Gretchen never agreed to arbitrate anything with Mr. Ailes and the contract on which he relies does not mention him and is not signed by him,” the statement from Carlson’s team, obtained by PEOPLE, read. “Gretchen intends to fight for her right to a public jury trial, a right protected by the discrimination laws and our Constitution.

“It is disturbing that the head of a large media company would try to silence the press and hide from the public a matter of such importance.”

Ailes attorney said that the clause in Carlson’s contract covered “any employment dispute,” and mandated that any issues must be handled in private.

“Gretchen Carlson had an arbitration clause in her contract, stating that any employment dispute regarding her employment at Fox News must be done via confidential arbitration,” Ailes’ lawyer’s statement – also obtained by PEOPLE – read. “Because Ms. Carlson’s lawsuit violated the arbitration clause, a motion was filed in federal court to have the case arbitrated. The federal court is the proper court to decide the motion because Ms. Carlson’s primary residence is in Connecticut and Mr. Ailes’ primary residence is in New York.”

Carlson and Ailes recent statements follow Carlson’s Wednesday lawsuit in which she accuses Ailes of sexual harassment, saying that he “has unlawfully retaliated against Carlson and sabotaged her career because she refused sexual advances and complained about severe and pervasive sexual harassment.”

Ailes denied the claims later that day, calling the allegations “false” and “retaliatory” in a statement, in which he also said that the accusations came about because “Fox News did not commence any negotiations to renew her contract.”

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