Fox Business Network host Charles Payne in 2011. Astrid Stawiarz / Getty Images

Fox Business Network has suspended longtime host Charles Payne during an investigation into allegations of “professional misconduct,” a spokesperson said.

The “Making Money” host was sidelined Thursday night after the Los Angeles Times first reported allegations of sexual harassment against him, citing two sources familiar with a complaint made by a female political analyst.

“We take issues of this nature extremely seriously and have a zero-tolerance policy for any professional misconduct,” a Fox Business Network spokesperson said in a statement. “This matter is being thoroughly investigated and we are taking all of the appropriate steps to reach a resolution in a timely manner.”

Payne, 56, has worked at Fox Business Network since it debuted 10 years ago and also hosts the syndicated talk show, “The Payne Nation.”

The Los Angeles Times did not name Payne’s accuser because she alleges that she was coerced into a sexual relationship under the threat of reprisals. The newspaper reported that the woman said she believes she was blacklisted as a guest on Fox Business Network and Fox News when she ended their affair in 2015 and told network executives.

Both Payne and the woman are married.

Payne admitted to a “romantic relationship” with the woman and issued an apology in a National Enquirer story published Wednesday, according to the Los Angeles Times.

In a series of tweets Friday morning, Payne did not detail the claims against him but said he gave an unnamed reporter a comment responding to the “false” allegations. He said the story was reported without it.

He tweeted, “This was my reply: ‘That is an ugly lie I vehemently deny to my core. There is a mountain of proof that also proves its [sic] a lie.'”

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He added that he would “fight this like a lion armed with truth.”

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Jonathan Halpern, who is representing Payne, said in a statement Friday to NBC News that Payne “vehemently denies the allegations” and would “defend himself vigorously against these claims and will hold those responsible to account.”

Sources told the the Los Angeles Times that his accuser is preparing a legal complaint against Payne and Fox, and that her hopes of becoming a paid contributor were dashed and appearances on Fox were drastically reduced after she ended their relationship.

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SOURCE: NBC News – Erik Ortiz