ABC News’ Brian Ross — who was suspended last year as chief investigative correspondent for a faulty report on Michael Flynn — is leaving the network, Page Six has exclusively learned.
ABC suspended Ross last December for a month without pay for a botched report on ousted White House national security adviser Flynn that reported President Trump directed Flynn to make contact with Russian officials. The mistake even sent stocks tumbling, and ABC issued an apology saying: “We deeply regret and apologize for the serious error.”
We hear that Ross on Monday announced he’s leaving the network. His longtime executive producer Rhonda Schwartz is also exiting. “The time has come to say good-bye,” said the duo in a letter to staff with an announcement by ABC News president James Goldston.
“After a great run of 24 years, we have decided to pack up and move on from ABC News, an organization that has meant so much to us. We leave with enormous gratitude for all those who supported us and helped build the industry’s most robust and honored investigative unit.” They added: “While we are signing off from ABC News, we are hardly leaving investigative journalism. There is much more to do.”
When Ross returned from his suspension, he kept the same title, but moved to another unit of ABC, Lincoln Square Productions, with offices blocks from the news division, to work on “long-term projects,” plus “20/20” and “Nightline.”
Goldston’s memo praised the pair, we hear. “They’ve exposed government corruption at every level, international human rights abuses and fraud, uncovered dangerous working conditions, sexual abuse cover-ups and dishonest business practices,” it said. “Their work has led repeatedly to real changes in policy in the U.S. and around the world.”
He added: “Over the years they have built a team of the best investigative journalists in our industry, and they leave behind an outstanding group that will continue to break stories for many years to come … We wish them well in their next chapter.”
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