Disgraced U.S. TV newsman Matt Lauer has denied new allegations he raped a co-worker in 2014.
Brooke Nevils has detailed her extramarital relations with the fired Today host in journalist Ronan Farrow’s new book, Catch and Kill, claiming Lauer lured her back to his hotel room while she was covering the Sochi Olympics in 2014, pushed her against the door and kissed her, before pushing her onto the bed, "flipping her over, (and) asking if she liked anal sex".
She alleges he then proceeded to rape her.
Lauer insists her allegations are "filled with false details" and in a new statement, he insists that he and Nevils "performed oral sex on each other", and had vaginal and anal sex, adding, "Each act was mutual and completely consensual."
The newsman explains he has opted not to speak out "to defend myself more vigorously against some of the false and salacious allegations leveled at me" and "confront the individuals making false allegations", because he didn't want to "create more headlines my kids would read", but admits his silence "has been a mistake".
"Today, nearly two years after I was fired by NBC, old stories are being recycled, titillating details are being added, and a dangerous and defamatory new allegation is being made," he writes. "All are being spread as part of a promotional effort to sell a book. It’s outrageous. So, after not speaking out to protect my children, it is now with their full support I say 'enough'.
"I had an extramarital affair with Brooke Nevils in 2014. It began when she came to my hotel room very late one night in Sochi, Russia. We engaged in a variety of sexual acts. We performed oral sex on each other, we had vaginal sex, and we had anal sex. Each act was mutual and completely consensual.
"The story Brooke tells is filled with false details intended only to create the impression this was an abusive encounter. Nothing could be further from the truth. There was absolutely nothing aggressive about that encounter. Brooke did not do or say anything to object... She was a fully enthusiastic and willing partner. At no time did she behave in a way that made it appear she was incapable of consent. She seemed to know exactly what she wanted to do. The only concern she expressed was that someone might see her leaving my room. She embraced me at the door as she left."
Lauer reveals the sexual encounter in Russia was the first of many, and after he and Nevils returned to New York, they continued their affair.
"Our meetings were arranged mutually," he adds. "At no time, during or after her multiple visits to my apartment, did she express in words or actions any discomfort with being there, or with our affair.
"She also went out of her way to see me several times in my dressing room at work, and on one of those occasions we had a sexual encounter. It showed terrible judgment on my part, but it was completely mutual and consensual."
"Brooke now says that she was terrified about the control I had over her career and felt pressure to agree to our encounters after Sochi," Lauer continues.
He admits he ended the affair "poorly" by ceasing contact with Brooke and "attempted to go back to my life and pretend as if nothing had happened", and now accepts how that "must have made her feel".
"However, being upset or having second thoughts does not give anyone the right to make false accusations years later about an affair, in which they fully and willingly participated."
He adds, "After Brooke filed her complaint in late 2017, her attorney publicly insisted she wanted to remain anonymous... But within a year she was reportedly out trying to sell a book. And it appears that she also sought a monetary payment from (network bosses at) NBC. Now she is making outrageous and false accusations to help sell a different book and stepping into the spotlight to cause as much damage as she can.
"There are people who fully understand the actual dynamic that existed between Brooke and me. They have reluctantly and quietly reached out in the past two years and shared what they know. They have accurately described Brooke and her role in this affair. I hope those people will understand that these allegations cross a serious line, and what they can share is a vital truth, even if it may seem unpopular.
"Because of my infidelity, I have brought more pain and embarrassment to my family than most people can ever begin to understand. They’ve been through hell. I have asked for their forgiveness, taken responsibility for what I did do wrong, and accepted the consequences. But by not speaking out I also emboldened those who continue to do me harm with false stories."
He ends the statement with: "I have never assaulted anyone or forced anyone to have sex. Period."