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Amazon's Jeff Bezos accuses National Enquirer publisher of blackmail

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos revealed on Thursday that the National Enquirer threatened to publish private photos of him and his mistress, Lauren Sanchez, if he didn't stop an investigation into how the publication was earlier able to obtain intimate text messages and photos between the two.

In a Medium post, Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post, shared emails sent from top executives with the National Enquirer's parent company, AMI. AMI is led by David Pecker, a longtime friend of President Trump's who would pay for stories about Trump, then never publish them. Bezos said an AMI representative relayed that Pecker was "apoplectic" about his investigation, and soon after, he was verbally told the Enquirer had nude photos of him, and would release those pictures and texts if the investigation continued.

Bezos then started to receive emails, including one that requested he release a statement saying the company's reporting was not politically motivated. Bezos refused. "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," he said. Read Bezos' post and the emails with AMI at Medium.