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Ronan Farrow Says AMI Tried to Blackmail Him

Jeff Bezos wasn't the only one, he says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 8, 2019 1:08 AM CST
Ronan Farrow, a contributing writer for the New Yorker, speaks with reporters at Associated Press headquarters in New York, Friday, July 27, 2018.   (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)
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(Newser) – Hours after Jeff Bezos accused the National Enquirer's parent company of blackmail, Ronan Farrow said American Media Inc. had done the same thing to him and at least one other journalist. Farrow tweeted Thursday night that after breaking stories on the Enquirer's "catch and kill" arrangement with President Trump, the journalists "fielded similar 'stop digging or we'll ruin you' blackmail efforts from AMI." Farrow reported on the arrangement for the New Yorker last year, Mediaite reports. In his tweet, he said he didn't engage with the blackmail attempt because he doesn't "cut deals with subjects of ongoing reporting."

In response to Farrow's tweet, former Associated Press editor Ted Bridis said his agency had been "warned explicitly by insiders" that AMI had hired private investigators to dig up dirt on AP journalists looking into the Enquirer's efforts to assist Trump, the Washington Post reports. "Never saw evidence of this either way, and it didn't stop our reporting," he said. AMI chief executive David Pecker is a longtime friend of Trump's. In another tweet Thursday night, Farrow said it was "worth returning" to his New Yorker story from Nov. 2017, "breaking the news that the same Enquirer editor Bezos dealt with was also behind a secret collaboration with Harvey Weinstein to dig up dirt on accusers." (In December, AMI admitted paying "hush money" to suppress a Trump story.)

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