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"No thank you, Mr. Pecker."
That's what Jeff Bezos said to David Pecker, who controls the National Enquirer. Bezos addressed Pecker in a public response to alleged extortion and blackmail.
The National Inquirer allegedly threatened to publish intimate photos that Bezos shared with his lover. You can guess why Bezos called out Mr. Pecker.
Bezos said he chose to publish the story rather than be bullied, despite the cost and embarrassment. The cost to the world's richest man is probably less of a concern than the embarrassment.
In fact, the National Inquirer had already embarrassed Bezos before his epic response. The tabloid published text messages suggesting he had an affair with TV host Lauren Sanchez.
After that, Bezos said he hired investigators to find out how the newspaper got the text messages. Pecker's people then demanded Bezo stop the investigation or else.
It's probably the most attention the National Inquirer has stirred since it reported that a Martian gave birth to a human. How it affects Amazon remains to be seen.
In the near future, it may have a more negative impact on Pecker. Prosecutors are already looking at the case.
American Media, the National Enquirer's parent company, was granted immunity last year for assisting an investigation of President Trump's former personal attorney. Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to various charges in the case.
The immunity agreement required the company "commit no crimes whatsoever." Last time we checked, that includes extortion and blackmail.
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