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Report: 'Disgusted' Hedge Fund Boss Wants to Offload Enquirer

Parent company is seeking bids for tabloid
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 11, 2019 4:23 AM CDT
This July 12, 2017 photo shows an issue of the National Enquirer featuring President Trump on its cover at a store in New York.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)
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(Newser) – With a possible lawsuit from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos looming, the parent company of the National Enquirer is seeking to offload the troubled tabloid. American Media says it is considering a sale so that it can focus on other parts of its business, the AP reports. "We feel the future opportunities with the tabloids can be best exploited by a different ownership," American Media CEO David Pecker said in a statement. Sources tell the Washington Post that there has been pressure for a sale from Anthony Melchiorre, chairman of the hedge fund that holds an 80% stake in American Media. Melchiorre is "disgusted" by the tabloid's tactics and fed up with its financial difficulties, the sources say.

American Media has admitted paying former Playboy model Karen McDougal $150,000 for her story about an alleged affair with President Trump, which the Enquirer never published. The company, under a non-prosecution arrangement, said the payment was made to influence the 2016 election. Bezos has accused the company of trying to blackmail him over racy photos and texts, and sources tell the New York Times that this could cause serious legal difficulties for the company, which was supposed to "commit no crimes whatsoever" for three years as part of the non-prosecution deal. But despite the legal problems, the company is expected to have a buyer within days, sources tell the Post. (Read more National Enquirer stories.)

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