HBO's Albrecht takes leave after assault

May 8, 2007 at 6:17 PM

LAS VEGAS, May 8 (UPI) -- The chairman and chief executive of the U.S. premium cable network HBO took a leave of absence Tuesday to seek alcohol counseling, the executive said.

Chris Albrecht's action followed his arrest Sunday on charges he assaulted a woman identified as his girlfriend outside the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, after an HBO-televised boxing match, Multichannel News reported.

HBO parent Time Warner Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Richard Parsons said the company granted Albrecht's leave request "pending resolution" of the assault charges.

"This weekend was a wake-up call to me of a weakness I thought I had overcome long ago," Albrecht said in a memo to co-workers. "I had been a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous for 13 years. Two years ago, I decided that I could handle drinking again. Clearly, I was wrong. Given that truth, I have committed myself to sobriety."

He apologized for any embarrassment his family and "the company I love" experienced.

HBO Chief Operating Officer Bill Nelson will fill in for Albrecht until the issue is resolved, Time Warner said.

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