VIDEO: Attorney claims National Enquirer threat to publish Bezos photos was ‘journalism,’ not blackmail
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Jeffrey P. Bezos, the chief executive of Amazon.com and the world’s richest man, has been a constant in headlines over the past few weeks — although not necessarily for either of the attributes listed here. Last month, the National Enquirer published texts and photos exposing Bezos’s extramarital affair with former television host Lauren Sanchez. The brazen leak of the intimate messages prompted Bezos to order an investigation into whether the supermarket tabloid had been politically motivated.
On Thursday, in a shocking escalation of events, Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post, published a bombshell Medium post accusing the National Enquirer’s parent company, American Media, Inc., of extortion and blackmail. He included emails from AMI lawyers who demanded Bezos publicly state that the supermarket tabloid’s coverage did not represent a political hit job. If he didn’t, they wrote, the National Enquirer would publish additional explicit photos, including selfies showing Bezos’s private parts.
The article goes on to state the following:
“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,” a defiant Bezos wrote in the post. “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.”
Pecker attorney Elkan Abramowitz told ABC “This Week” host George Stephanopoulos, “It absolutely is not extortion and not blackmail.” He argued that it was ajournalistic decision. Watch:
An attorney representing American Media Inc. CEO David Pecker says his client did not engage in extortion or blackmail against Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. https://t.co/Oq6CjRZOtY pic.twitter.com/uO72hBMSof
— CNN (@CNN) February 10, 2019
THIS MORNING: In an exclusive interview with @GStephanopoulos, AMI CEO David Pecker’s attorney Elkan Abramowitz responds to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ allegations that the National Enquirer tried to extort and blackmail him, only on “This Week” https://t.co/uKjVwEaOQo pic.twitter.com/UiMlAihAFu
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) February 10, 2019
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