Jeff Bezos: AMI defends position on Amazon founder

Posted February 09, 2019

In a post on the online platform Medium, Bezos said Enquirer publisher American Media Inc (AMI), led by David Pecker, a friend of President Donald Trump, was now threatening to publish intimate photos of him, if he did not call off the probe.

Bezos' extramarital affair became public when the Enquirer published a January 9 story about his relationship with Lauren Sanchez, a former TV anchor who is also married.

American Media said in a statement on Friday morning that the company "believes fervently that it acted lawfully in the reporting of the story of Mr. Bezos". The company pledged to "promptly and thoroughly investigate the claims" made by Bezos. "Upon completion of that investigation, the Board will take whatever appropriate action is necessary", it added.

Trump has often railed against Bezos, the owner of the Washington Post, on Twitter.

It reported that Bezos sent "sleazy text messages and gushing love notes" to Sanchez, months before Bezos announced he was splitting up with his wife, MacKenzie.

"When I see allegations like that, the first question I have is, did they reach out to the DOJ, did they ask for an investigation from any USA government entity before they made their public claims", Eddington added.

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The photos include a "below the belt selfie" of Mr Bezos, photos of him in tight boxer-briefs and wearing only a towel, and several revealing photos of Ms Sanchez, according to the email Mr Bezos released in his blog post.

The agreement with NY prosecutors required AMI to commit no further crimes for at least three years, but the company's alleged threat to Bezos could be interpreted as a breach, potentially opening it to prosecution.

"Rather than capitulate to extortion and blackmail", Bezos said, "I've chose to publish exactly what they sent me, despite the personal cost and embarrassment they threaten".

Jeff Bezos's clash with the National Enquirer, including a fight to prevent compromising photos from being published, is putting the supermarket tabloid and its financial backers back under scrutiny.

He said the Enquirer demanded that he stop investigating how the publication recently obtained private messages he and his girlfriend had exchanged.

Amateur sleuths not on Bezos' security team belive that Trump using the national security apparatus to spy on someone he considers to be his nemesis is entirely consistent with Trump's behavior. Prosecutors at the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of NY already picked Pecker's brain and his organization's records for anything they could use in their case against Cohen, which was apparently enough to get him off with a warning.

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AMI has ties to Saudi Arabia, predominately in connection with Trump, as well.

Bezos' blog post described efforts by Enquirer publisher AMI to get him to clear the tabloid's exposé of having any political agenda or origin.

No one knows, at this point, the extent of the statements AMI might have made over the course of the Cohen-Trump hush payment inquiry.

Farrow also tweeted a reference to a New Yorker story he worked on about how the same editor Bezos was dealing with ― AMI chief content officer Dylan Howard ― was sharing reporters' information with disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein to help him combat sexual misconduct accusations. He did, however, post something after the initial National Enquirer story posted last month, calling Bezos "Jeff Bozo" and arguing that the tabloid was a more accurate source of news than the Washington Post.

White House representatives did not immediately respond to emails seeking comment about Bezos' post.

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