Friday, February 08, 2019

Jeff Bezos Accuses the National Enquirer of Sextortion | Lawfare

Check the full post for an index of related resources; also see Bezos Allegations Could Upend American Media’s Deal With Feds | Bloomberg
"Wittes and I, along with Cody Poplin and Clara Spera, produced a Brookings Institution report on sextortion in 2016, and Wittes interviewed Mona Sedky—a computer crimes prosecutor who focuses on sextortion cases—on the Lawfare Podcast. Much of what we said then remains true now: sextortion is understudied; it’s suprisingly common; and it’s a brutal form of abuse. Some victims commit suicide. Those who suffer from sextortion are not usually those who have money and power; they are, by and large, vulnerable children and teenagers who are scared and don’t know where to turn. For this reason, as Wittes identified, Bezos’s decision to come forward with AMI’s threat is actually quite a powerful statement.
I would be remiss to close without noting the larger political implications of the story, though they’re outside the scope of this piece. It’s not entirely clear from the Medium post precisely what “coverage” AMI was concerned could be described as “politically motivated,” nor is it clear who AMI worried would make that statement—Bezos, or the Post. Bezos has long been a target of President Trump due to his ownership of the Post, and the Enquirer—helmed by David Pecker, a longtime associate of the president’s—has become enmeshed in the many investigations into Trump due to its role in allegedly enabling the silencing of women with whom Trump had affairs. AMI recently signed a non-prosecution agreement with prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York."
Jeff Bezos Accuses the National Enquirer of Sextortion | Lawfare

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