A New York trial judge this week threw out Fox News Channel's lawsuit
against Paula Zahn's agent, which alleged that N.S. Bienstock agency boss
Richard Leibner acted unethically and in violation of Zahn's contract with Fox News.
In one of the early talent raids between the two news networks last year, Cable News Network
courted Zahn, who was hosting a prime time show for Fox News, to host a revamped
morning show. Although Zahn had time left on her contract after she reached a
deal with CNN, Fox News chief Roger Ailes fired her and sued Leibner.
Fox News -- which said it disagreed with the court's decision and would appeal --
contended that Zahn was barred by contract from negotiating with other parties at the
time she was talking with CNN.
The court disagreed, finding that Fox News had a right to match outside offers,
but that neither Zahn nor Leibner was barred from negotiating with CNN.
Bienstock maintained throughout that it had followed Zahn's contract terms and had
done nothing unethical.