Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has accused the owner of The National Enquirer of blackmailing him into halting his investigation into their publication of private text messages he exchanged with his mistress.
In an explosive blog post on Thursday night, Bezos revealed that intermediaries of David J. Pecker, the chairman of American Media Inc(AMI), had threatened to print a number of revealing, personal photos that depict Bezos and his mistress in various states of undress, unless he agreed to halt his investigation into how the Enquirer accessed his private text messages.
Soon after Bezos announced his divorce from novelist MacKenzie Bezos in early January, the National Enquirer outed his extramarital affair with married television anchor Lauren Sanchez in a report that included the couples’ private text messages.
Bezos has hired a private investigator to look into how those messages were obtained. Gavin de Becker, a longtime private security consultant, was commissioned by Bezos to investigate whether Sanchez’s brother, revealed to be a supporter of Trump, may have orchestrated the leak for political reasons.
“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,” Bezos wrote in his blogpost, explaining his decision to expose the blackmail attempt. “I prefer to stand up, roll this log over and see what crawls out.”
Bezos’s blog post included threatening emails he received from AMI, The email by AMI chief content officer Dylan Howard listed out the various compromising photographs that AMI threatened to release if Bezos continued his investigation into the Enquirer’s reporting practices.
“In addition to the ‘below the belt selfie — otherwise colloquially known as a ‘d*ck pick’ — The Enquirer obtained a further nine images. These include:
A shirtless Bezos holding his phone in his left hand — while wearing his wedding ring. He’s wearing either tight black cargo pants or shorts — and his semi-erect manhood is penetrating the zipper of said garment.
· A full-length body selfie of Bezos wearing just a pair of tight black boxer-briefs or trunks, with his phone in his left hand — while wearing his wedding ring.
· A selfie of Bezos fully clothed.
· A full-length scantily-clad body shot with short trunks.
· A naked selfie in a bathroom — while wearing his wedding ring. Bezos is wearing nothing but a white towel — and the top of his pubic region can be seen.
· Sanchez wearing a plunging red neckline dress revealing her cleavage and a glimpse of her nether region.
· Sanchez wearing a two-piece red bikini with gold detail dress revealing her cleavage.
In his blogpost, Bezos also attributed political motives as reason for AMI’s sleazy reportage. He pointed out its publisher’s close ties with President Donald Trump, as well as its links to the government of Saudi Arabia.
Bezos owns The Washington Post. The paper has aggressively reported on the murder last year of its columnist Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi dissident.
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