Michael Sanchez, the brother of Jeff Bezos’ girlfriend, is alleging in a lawsuit that the writer of the Nationwide Enquirer defamed him when it claimed that he was the source of the tabloid’s 2019 exposé in regards to the Amazon.com Inc. founder’s extramarital affair.
The lawsuit, filed Friday in federal court docket in Los Angeles, facilities across the publication of a January 2019 article in the National Enquirer exposing an affair between Mr. Bezos and Lauren Sanchez, Mr. Sanchez’s sister, each of whom had been married on the time. Mr. Bezos and Ms. Sanchez stay in a relationship.
Mr. Sanchez, a expertise supervisor, alleges that Nationwide Enquirer guardian American Media Inc. issued “a false and defamatory press launch” in March 2019 saying Mr. Sanchez tipped off the tabloid in regards to the affair and “supplied the entire supplies” for its investigation.
Mr. Sanchez says he wasn’t AMI’s supply in regards to the affair and didn’t leak nude images. His lawsuit alleges it was AMI that “plotted to dig up embarrassing data” about Mr. Bezos to curry favor with President Trump and was aided by Saudi Arabia. Saudi officers have rejected the concept they helped the Enquirer.
Mr. Sanchez claims his involvement within the story was restricted to advising the couple on guarding the connection’s secrecy.
AMI’s “false and defamatory statements have, amongst different issues, devastated Mr. Sanchez’s skilled profession and repute, destroyed the invaluable media relationships…and left him estranged from his family,” the lawsuit acknowledged.
In an announcement issued by means of a spokesman Saturday, AMI maintained that Mr. Sanchez “offered the Nationwide Enquirer the story about his sister’s secret affair and was the only supply for its reporting.” AMI stated the lawsuit was frivolous and motivated by greed.
“We stay up for our day in court docket,” stated Jonathan M. Jenkins, a Los Angeles lawyer representing Mr. Sanchez.
Mr. Sanchez’s criticism additionally names AMI’s chairman and chief govt, David Pecker, and its chief content material officer, Dylan Howard, as defendants.
Mr. Sanchez earlier this yr sued Mr. Bezos for defamation in state court docket in Los Angeles. That criticism, which Mr. Bezos is in search of to dismiss, accuses representatives of the Amazon CEO of spreading false rumors that he leaked graphic images of Mr. Bezos to the press.
In court docket paperwork, legal professionals for Mr. Bezos and his safety guide, Gavin de Becker, have stated Mr. Sanchez was the source of leaked personal text messages used for the January 2019 Nationwide Enquirer article in regards to the affair. Neither Mr. Bezos nor Mr. de Becker have accused Mr. Sanchez of leaking nude images to the Enquirer, court docket paperwork stated.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating the alleged hack of Mr. Bezos’ phone and whether or not Nationwide Enquirer’s writer tried to extort Mr. Bezos. In a weblog put up final yr, Mr. Bezos accused American Media of attempting to blackmail him by threatening to launch embarrassing images.