The strange long-standing drama behind the story of Jeff Bezos’ secret extramarital affair is about to become even stranger. Shadow figure associated with National Inquirer claims in court that one of the most powerful Hollywood players has provided the supermarket tabloid with grim details about the affair.
After Bezos announced in 2018, he is separated from Mackenzie Bezos, his wife of 25 years, National Inquirer revealed that the richest man in the world had a relationship with Lauren Sanchez, a Southern California-based television presenter and pilot. The cover-up series of supermarket tabloids about the affair ̵
Now Nikolaos Tzima Hatziefstathiou, a journalist with a strange and disturbing criminal history who reports the story with National Inquirer and AMI (henceforth renamed “A360 Media”), claims that one of the main sources of information was the then husband of Lauren Sanchez, the executive director of William Morris Endeavor, Patrick Whitesel.
Hatziefstathiou’s allegations are part of a defamation lawsuit filed by Michael Sanchez this year against AMI, claiming that the tabloid media company lied when it declared him the only source of information about the Bezos affair.
In a statement filed by Michael Sanchez’s legal team, Hatziefstatiou claimed that then-AMI Vice President Dylan Howard had commissioned him to look into the Bezos affair after telling him about the relationship from Whitesel, Endeavor’s chief executive, one of the most prominent talent agencies around the world.
Hatziefstathiou argues that the affair is a convenient excuse for Endeavor’s CEO to end his marriage, but AMI intends to protect him as a source.
Mr. Whitesel discovered the affair and, serving as a secret, undisclosed source for AMI, literally turned the affair into a “divorce card” that allowed him to leave his wife … through a pre-planned divorce in which he appeared innocent and scandalous – free of charge, just months before the planned initial public offering by WME, “Haciefstatiou wrote in the statement.
Representatives from Howard and AMI / A360 did not immediately return requests for comment.
“This is completely untrue, and unfortunately this is not the first time we have seen this desperate attempt by Michael Sanchez to perpetuate this strange and annoying circus,” Patrick Whitesel’s spokesman told The Daily Beast. “The fact that Patrick is involved in this strange series of cases and incriminations is a direct result of the nature of those involved and is completely detached from reality. Any suggestion to the contrary is malicious and slanderous. “
In a resignation letter from AMI to Hatziefstathiou in 2020, which is included in this week’s declaration, he wrote that the company included “outright lies” in its lawsuits related to the Bezos affair, saying that AMI misled the courts about the source of information.
But the former AMI journalist himself has a dubious history of legal issues that could color the court’s view of its reliability and credibility. In 2019, he was charged in 20 criminal cases for a strange fraud in which he posed as a journalist from New York Times and Good Morning America and created a fake racist email that was supposed to be from a Delaware County probation and parole officer.
Like Philly Glass noted that he had previously pleaded guilty to calling law enforcement to report disturbances to his neighbor’s home after sending dozens of prostitutes there, and was told by a judge to stop watching movies about cops. after trying to set up a drug dealer for the police.
Much of Hatsiefstatiou’s testimony this week is somewhat of a shake-up of his defense of his personal behavior and details of his reports on the Bezos affair. Furthermore, while Hatziefstathiou claims that Whitesell was involved, the case does not include any exhibits other than his own testimony that clearly link the WME CEO to AMI.
However, Haciefstatiou said he also had “ten terabytes” of data, consisting of a million AMI documents and his coverage of the Bezos affair in support of his claims.
The question of who spread information about the Bezos affair on AMI and Inquiry provoked an extensive long-term hunt with the participation of some of the most shady players in the world of tabloid journalism, entertainment and corporate espionage. In 2019, The Daily Beast first announced that Michael Sanchez was AMI’s source for the grim text messages between his sister and Bezos, a revelation about Inquiry later confirmed.
In a court declaration last July – AMI’s proposal to dismiss Michael Sanchez’s claim and sanction him for alleged abuse of the judiciary – Inquiry the parent company includes cache emails, text messages and sworn statements from AMI employees who tend to cite Sanchez as a source of abusive stories. Court documents portrayed Sanchez as a disloyal brother who wants to sell his married sister and her secret billionaire lover.
In the end, AMI agreed to pay Sanchez $ 200,000, according to the court case in July 2020, for “information, photos and text messages documenting the affair between Bezos and L. Sanchez.” As it turned out, this was a losing offer. Last month, after a Los Angeles County High Court judge dismissed Michael Sanchez’s separate defamation suit against Bezos and his security consultant Gavin de Becker, Sanchez was ordered to pay the billionaire $ 218,385 for Bezos’ court costs.
Meanwhile, the AMI case contains chronological inconsistencies, which raises questions about Inquiry initial source, which are described in detail in the statement of Haciefstatiou, which states that it was the Hollywood broker Whitesel who first warned the tabloid about the Bezos-Sanchez relationship.
The text messages provided by Michael Sanchez were not the only nice proof of the affair in Inquiry possession. And Sanchez claims he is not the only source of AMI, in theory, it seems that the Bezos camp shares.
In an extensive column for The Daily Beast for 2019, Bezos ‘best security consultant Gavin de Becker wrote that his investigation concluded with “great confidence” that “the Saudis had access to Bezos’ phone and received a personal information. To date, it is not clear to what extent, if any, AMI was aware of the details. “It simply came to our notice then.
While he speculated that the Saudis had access to Bezos’ phone, de Becker publicly wondered why AMI almost seemed to intend to release Michael Sanchez as Inquiry source. “What was unusual, very unusual, was how hard the people at AMI worked to reveal the identity of their source in public,” he wrote. “First through strong hints they gave me, and later through direct statements, AMI effectively pinned the kick mark on Michael Sanchez.”
Bezos writes in a 2019 Medium post that AMI is trying to “blackmail” him, saying the media company is threatening to post “selfies under his belt” – otherwise colloquially known as “d * ck pick” [sic]”Unless the Washington Post stops investigating the leak.
“Any personal embarrassment that AMI can cause me recedes into the background because there is a much more important issue here,” Bezos wrote. “If in my position I can’t resist this kind of blackmail, how many people can?”