Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, has published an amazing personal blog post on the Medium platform with information about what he claims to be extortion and blackmail on behalf of the tabloid National Enquirer.
In a message entitled "No thank you, Mr. Pecker," Bezos argues that he is threatened with the publication of nude photos of him and suggestive photo's of Lauren Sanchez, the news anchor and reporter with whom Bezos has an affair had. That is, unless he agrees to publicly make a declaration in which the motives are left behind National Enquirer the research of parent company American Media Inc. to his personal life, by saying that the company was never politically motivated or influenced by political forces & # 39 ;.
National Enquirer first detailed Bezos affair, which led to the dissolution of his marriage with MacKenzie Bezos last month.
Bezos stands up against extortion with the risk that his nudes leak
What can & # 39; political forces & # 39; to do with the love life of Jeff Bezos? AMI is at the center of an ongoing legal controversy in which President Donald Trump is involved in the practice of "catch and kill", whereby a publication buys the exclusive rights to incriminating information about someone and deliberately occurs it becomes news, through confidentiality agreements and other legal techniques, to prevent it from ever ending – the protection of a person, in that case Trump, from harmful stories.
(By court documents, AMI had used the tactics "capture and kill" to kill a story about Trump's alleged affair with a woman prior to his presidential campaign by paying $ 150,000 for exclusivity. "AMI CEO David Pecker, a good friend of Trump's, was reportedly rewarded for this and other support during the Trump campaign with an invitation to a dinner at the White House for Pecker and someone near the royal family of Saudi Arabia , where Pecker pursued business deals and was looking for acquisition financing.)
AMI reportedly approached Bezos after he had been informed that he had done his own research on how National Enquirer has received his text message. Company lawyers tried to persuade Bezos to close the investigation because of the likelihood that this could lead to more devastating revelations about AMI's catch and murder & # 39; tactics and its political ties with Trump and other world leaders, Bezos argues in the Medium post. "If your customer agrees to stop and abolish such defamatory behavior, we are prepared to enter into constructive discussions regarding the texts and photos that we have in our possession", read one of the e-mails sent to the legal team of Bezos's private investigation.
The photo's in question include a "full-length body-selfie from Mr. Bezos who only wears a pair of tight black boxer shorts or trunks" and a "naked selfie in a bathroom … who only wears a white towel" , among others including an explicit dick photo. The complete photo reduction came from a threatening e-mail sent to Gavin de Becker's lawyer, the well-known security consultant Bezos who was hired to conduct the private investigation, written by none other than Dylan Howard, AMI's main content officer. (At the end of 2017, Howard was accused of sexual harassment and misconduct during his years at AMI and, according to The Hollywood Reporter, called himself around the office by the nickname "dildo".)
This is the complete seven-point extortion attempt by Jon Fine, AMI's current deputy legal adviser and, coincidentally, a former Amazon lawyer who worked for the company for 9 years:
These are our proposed conditions:
1. A full and complete mutual release of all claims that American Media on the one hand and Jeff Bezos and Gavin de Becker (the "Bezos parties") may have against each other on the other.
2. A public mutually agreed confirmation of the Bezos parties, released through a mutually acceptable news center, confirming that they have no knowledge or basis to suggest that AM's communications are politically motivated or influenced by political forces, and agreement that they will no longer refer to such a possibility.
3. AM agrees to publish, distribute, share or describe unpublished texts and photos (the "unpublished materials").
4. AM confirms that it has not carried out electronic monitoring practices in connection with its reporting and has no knowledge of such behavior.
5. The contract is completely confidential.
6. In the event of a breach of the agreement by one or more of the Bezos parties, AM is released from its obligations under the agreement and may publish the unpublished materials.
7. Any other disputes arising from this agreement will first be submitted to JAMS mediation in California
"Well that [the email] got my attention. But not in the way they probably had hoped. Any personal embarrassment AMI can cause me to sit in a backseat because there is a much more important issue involved. If in my position I can not stand up against such a form of extortion, how many people can do that? ", Bezos writes.
"In the AMI letters that I make public, you see the exact details of their cruel proposal: they publish the personal photos, unless Gavin de Becker and I make the specific false public statement to the press," he continues. "Rest assured, no real journalists ever propose something like this happens here … Nothing I could write here could tell National Enquirer story as eloquently as their own words below. "
"This communication reinforces AMI's long-deserved reputation for arming journalistic privileges, hides behind important safeguards and ignores the doctrines and purpose of real journalism," he adds. "Of course I do not want personal photos to be published, but I will not participate in their well-known practice of blackmail, political favors, political attacks and corruption." I prefer to stand up, this log out to roll and see what comes out of it. "
Amazon and representatives for AMI did not immediately respond to requests for comments.