Published: Fri, February 08, 2019
Money | By Ethel Goodwin

Jeff Bezos claims tabloid tried to blackmail him with explicit pics

Jeff Bezos claims tabloid tried to blackmail him with explicit pics

Bezos says he's posting this "despite the personal cost and embarrassment they threaten", because of the nature of the blackmail threatened against him.

That same day, the National Enquirer touted that it would publish alleged intimate text messages between Bezos and Lauren Sanchez, whom he was said to be dating.

It's a long, rambling post, but the gist of it is that - possibly thanks to a deep political/media conspiracy - American Media, owners of the National Enquirer, have been threatening Bezos with the publication of his n00dz, which emerged as part of the sexting scandal which destroyed his marriage. In exchange for a promise to not publish embarrassing photos obtained from his text messages, AMI's general counsel Jon Fine asked for Bezos and his lawyer for a statement "affirming that they have no knowledge or basis for suggesting that AM's coverage was politically motivated or influenced by political forces".

In another email dated February 6, Fine asked Bezos and his attorney to publicly refute the Post's reporting and announce "that they have no knowledge of basis for suggesting that American Media Inc.'s coverage was politically motivated of influencer by political forces, and an agreement that they will cease referring to such a possibility".

"But", he continued, "I also won't participate in their well-known practice of blackmail, political favours, political attacks, and corruption. AMI's claim of newsworthiness is that the photos are necessary to show Amazon shareholders that my business judgment is awful".

AMI has not yet responded to the BBC's request for comment.

Read Jeff Bezos' full Medium post here.

In this March 4, 2018 file photo, Jeff Bezos and wife MacKenzie Bezos arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills, Calif. Bezos says he and his wife, MacKenzie, have made a decision to divorce after 25 years of marriage.

In an extraordinarily personal online post, Mr Bezos said intermediaries of Mr David Pecker, chairman of American Media Inc (AMI), the owner of The Enquirer, had approached him to stop his investigation. "Mr. Pecker and his company have also been investigated for various actions they've taken on behalf of the Saudi Government". "I prefer to stand up, roll this log over, and see what crawls out".

Like Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the richest man on the planet, who was forced to do a post about how people are trying to leak his nudes.

Patrick Whitesell and Lauren Sanchez at the Los Angeles Premiere Of Warner Bros.

Bezos has publicly criticized the Trump administration on numerous occasions, as has the Washington Post. Bezos commissioned de Becker - his longtime security consultant - to investigate how the material fell into the Enquirer's hands.

Instead of making a deal with AMI, Bezos made a decision to go public, writing: "If in my position I can't stand up to this kind of extortion, how many people can?"

Dylan Howard's name, along with two National Enquirer reporters, appears on a story the magazine published on 9 January containing alleged details of Mr Bezos' affair with Ms Sanchez.

Bezos usually stays out of the public eye, frequently delegating announcements and public Amazon business updates to his executives.

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