Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos said in a shocking Medium post Thursday that he’s being extorted and blackmailed by his nemesis the National Enquirer and its parent company, AMI.
Bezos says that the Enquirer is threatening to publish even more embarrassing photos of him if he doesn’t put a stop to an investigation currently underway by a private investigator hired by Bezos. The investigator, Bezos says, is determining how the tabloid got access to his private text messages with Lauren Sanchez, the woman Bezos had allegedly been seeing.
AMI’s lawyers want Bezos to say publicly that the Enquirer and its parent were not politically motivated when pursuing the story of Bezos’s affair. AMI and its owner, David Pecker, have been accused of buying salacious stories about Donald Trump and killing them so they can’t harm the president.
The AMI lawyers said Pecker was extremely angry when he heard of the investigation.
Here’s a snippet from one of the memorandum’s from the AMI lawyer to the Bezos lawyer, listing the terms of a settlement:
2. A public, mutually-agreed upon acknowledgment from the Bezos Parties, released through a mutually-agreeable news outlet, affirming that they have no knowledge or basis for suggesting that AM’s coverage was politically motivated or influenced by political forces, and an agreement that they will cease referring to such a possibility.
Bezos says doing that would constitute lying, which suggests that Bezos’s investigation has found something concrete.
So instead of quietly capitulating to avoid embarrassment, Bezos wrote his first-ever Medium post, making public the tabloid’s threats and demands.
“These communications cement AMI’s long-earned reputation for weaponizing journalistic privileges, hiding behind important protections, and ignoring the tenets and purpose of true journalism. Of course I don’t want personal photos published, but I also won’t participate in their well-known practice of blackmail, political favors, political attacks, and corruption. I prefer to stand up, roll this log over, and see what crawls out.”
Bezos includes the emails from AMI in his Medium post. And it’s juicy stuff. You can read the whole thing here.