The Wall Street Journal reports that the National Enquirer’s publisher paid $200,000 to obtain intimate texts between Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and his mistress Lauren Sanchez. American Media Inc., the supermarket tabloid’s publisher, reportedly paid that sum to Michael Sanchez, Lauren’s brother.
The Journal’s finding, attributed to people familiar with the matter, parallels the conclusion reached by private investigators working for Bezos as of early February. Those investigators reportedly found that Michael Sanchez had leaked the texts to the Enquirer, although they didn’t appear to conclude who might have paid for them.
Bezos has said AMI threatened to publish explicit photos of him unless he stopped investigating how the Enquirer obtained his private exchanges and publicly declared that the Enquirer’s coverage of him was not politically motivated.