from Marc Raimondi at www.espn.com:
Vince McMahon, World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE) longtime leader, allegedly paid out millions in hush money to a former female wrestler with whom he had a coercive sexual relationship and who was allegedly not brought back to WWE after spurning further sexual advances from the executive, according to a report published Friday in the Wall Street Journal.
McMahon allegedly paid out $7.5 million to the former wrestler, who claimed that McMahon coerced her into giving him oral sex, demoted her and then decided not to renew her contract in 2005 after she resisted further sexual encounters with him, per the Journal report. The wrestler and her lawyer reportedly negotiated a non-disclosure agreement with McMahon in 2018.
The Journal report details a total of $12 million allegedly paid out to four women over the last 16 years to quiet allegations of the 76-year-old McMahon’s sexual misconduct.
More from www.wrestlinginc.com:
After releasing a report on June 15 claiming that Vince McMahon paid $3 million in “hush money” to a former paralegal with whom he and John Laurinaitis allegedly had sexual relations, the Wall Street Journal followed up with new exposé Friday that raises the number of women involved to four, at least one of whom was a wrestler, and the amount of money paid out to more than $12 million.
The wrestler alleges that McMahon “coerced her into giving him oral sex,” and that she was demoted and released from the company in 2005 after refusing “further sexual encounters.” McMahon bought her silence on the matter in 2018 for a payout of $7.5 million. Meanwhile, in 2008, a former WWE contractor allegedly signed a non-disclosure agreement and was paid approximately $1 million after she “presented the company with unsolicited nude photos of Mr. McMahon she reported receiving from him and alleged that he had sexually harassed her on the job.” And according to the Journal’s sources, another $1 million settlement in 2006 went to “a former manager who had worked 10 years for Mr. McMahon before he allegedly initiated a sexual relationship with her.”
McMahon has been under a harsh spotlight since the initial allegations were reported. The WWE board of directors has reportedly launched an investigation into McMahon, who announced he was “stepping back” from his position of CEO and chairman while the investigation was ongoing, but that he would still be in control of his creative duties. McMahon then made several public appearances, both on WWE programming and at the latest UFC 276 fight. Meanwhile, New York Magazine released an article on June 27 in which former WWE talent Mario Mancini corroborated old allegations that McMahon sexually assaulted WWE’s first female referee, Rita Chatterton, back in the early 1990s, and as of June 28, eight law firms are investigating WWE for potential breach of fiduciary responsibilities to its investors in the wake of the Wall Street Journal’s bombshell reporting.