Is The National Enquirer Threatening to Release Nude Photos of Jeff Bezos?

2019 has gotten off to a rocky start for Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. The year kicked off with him and his wife Mackenzie announcing their divorce after 25 years of marriage.

Now, he is in hot water of a different sort.

In a blog posted to Medium yesterday, Bezos claimed that David Pecker, the CEO of American Media Inc., was blackmailing him.

“Something unusual happened to me yesterday,” Bezos wrote. “Actually, for me it wasn’t just unusual — it was a first. I was made an offer I couldn’t refuse. Or at least that’s what the top people at the National Enquirer thought. I’m glad they thought that, because it emboldened them to put it all in writing. Rather than capitulate to extortion and blackmail, I’ve decided to publish exactly what they sent me, despite the personal cost and embarrassment they threaten.”

According to Bezos, Pecker’s company has recently struck an immunity deal with the U.S. Department of Justice. Bezos also claims that Pecker and his company are under investigation for their dealings with the Saudi Arabian government.

The Amazon CEO says that he was unaware of Pecker’s political dilemmas when he started his own investigation of the National Enquirer. His investigation was about a much different matter, in fact. Something much more personal.

Shortly after Bezos and his ex-wife announced their divorce, the National Enquirer published a story detailing Bezos’ affair with tv host Lauren Sanchez.

In retaliation, Bezos had hired an investigator to find out how the publication knew of his affair and got ahold of the text messages that they released. So, the investigation had nothing to do with the company’s political dealings.

“I didn’t know much about most of that a few weeks ago when intimate texts messages from me were published in the National Enquirer,” he wrote of the National Enquirer’s legal trouble. “I engaged investigators to learn how those texts were obtained, and to determine the motives for the many unusual actions taken by the Enquirer. As it turns out, there are now several independent investigations looking into this matter.”

In response to his investigation, Bezos was allegedly sent an email from the publication threatening to release indecent photos of him.

“In the interests of expediting this situation, and with The Washington Post poised to publish unsubstantiated rumors of The National Enquirer’s initial report, I wanted to describe to you the photos obtained during our newsgathering,” the email read.

The sender then outlined nine images of Bezos that would be released, including indecent photos of Sanchez.

Bezos claims that in order for the photos to remain private, AMI said that he and his private investigator would have to make a public statement saying that they “have no knowledge or basis for suggesting that AMI’s coverage was politically motivated or influenced by political forces.”

Instead of surrending to the request, Bezos decided to stand up to his blackmailers.

“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,” he wrote. “I prefer to stand up, roll this log over, and see what crawls out.”

Read more: Did Jeff Bezos Sign a Prenup with Mackenzie Bezos?

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