rain.png
Tuesday February 25th, 2020 7:35AM

National Enquirer being sold to former newsstand mogul

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — The National Enquirer is being sold to the former head of the airport newsstand company Hudson News following a rocky year in which the tabloid was accused of burying stories that could have hurt Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.

Tabloid owner American Media said Thursday it plans to sell the supermarket weekly to James Cohen. Financial terms were not immediately disclosed for the deal, which included two other American Media tabloids, the Globe and the National Examiner.

American Media said last week that it wanted to get out of the tabloid business to focus on its other operations, which includes its teen brand and broadcast platforms.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan agreed last year not to prosecute American Media in exchange for the company's cooperation in a campaign finance investigation. That probe eventually led to a three-year prison term for Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen for campaign violations among other charges.

American Media admitted it had paid $150,000 to keep former Playboy model Karen McDougal quiet about an alleged affair with Trump to help his campaign. Trump has denied an affair.

The sale would end a longtime relationship between the National Enquirer and Trump. Under the aegis of American Media CEO David Pecker, the tabloid has for years buried potentially embarrassing stories about Trump and other favored celebrities by buying the rights to them and never publishing in a practice called "catch-and-kill."

The Associated Press reported last year that Pecker kept a safe in the Enquirer's office that held documents on buried stories, including those involving Trump.

Whether James Cohen has any allegiances to Trump is not clear. While he was a registered Republican as late as 2017, according to Nexis records, he has given to both Republicans and Democrats. That included $17,300 in 2016 to an arm of the Democratic National Committee and $2,500 to the Republican National Committee in 2012.

News of the sale comes two months after Amazon chief Jeff Bezos publicly accused the National Enquirer of trying to blackmail him by threatening to publish explicit photos of him.

An American Media attorney denied the charge, but it threatened potentially big legal costs by upending American Media's non-prosecution agreement in the hush money case. The AP reported that federal prosecutors were looking into whether the publisher violated terms of the deal, which included a promise not to break any laws in the future.

The Bezos accusation comes at a difficult time for American Media. It has financed several recent acquisitions with borrowed money and has been struggling under a heavy debt load. American Media said the Cohen deal would help reduce the amount it needs to pay back, leaving it with $355 million in debt.

The Washington Post, which earlier reported the sale, said Cohen will pay $100 million in the deal.

Cohen's family had run a magazine and newspaper distributor for decades before his father branched into newsstand stores in 1980s, starting with a single one at LaGuardia Airport. Before he died in 2012, the father had opened more than 600 stores.

After the death, James Cohen's niece alleged her uncle had cheated her out of her inheritance. She lost the case.

The family sold a majority stake in the chain about a decade ago. The business is now owned by Dufry, an operator of duty-free stores in which James Cohen is a major shareholder.

Cohen still owns a magazine and newspaper distributor called Hudson News Distributors. In addition, he runs a real estate developer and a publishing company, which owns Gallerie, an art and design magazine.

Cohen has reportedly been involved in American Media deals before. The New York Times reports that, in 2011, Cohen invested in the company's American edition of OK!, a British tabloid.

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, Top General short headlines, AP Elections, General Presidential Election News, AP Business, AP Elections - Political Conventions, AP Elections - Campaigns, AP Technology News
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
A beleaguered Trump feared 'the end of my presidency'
Trump Agonistes: Mueller report uncovers perilous moments for the president and times when aides acted to save Trump from himself
4:34PM ( 7 minutes ago )
'A good day': Trump claims victory with Mueller report out
Even before the world got a glimpse at the redacted version of the special counsel's report, President Donald Trump was trying once more to frame the moment as a political victory.
4:26PM ( 15 minutes ago )
America's 1st female astronaut candidate, Jerrie Cobb, dies
America's first female astronaut candidate, pilot Jerrie Cobb, has died
4:25PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Who owns aloha? Hawaii eyes protections for native culture
Hawaii lawmakers are considering adopting a resolution calling for the creation of legal protections for Native Hawaiian cultural intellectual property
3:59PM ( 42 minutes ago )
'Toxic cocktail' poisoning water in fire-ravaged city
Officials say the drinking water in Paradise, California, which was decimated by a wildfire last year, is contaminated with the cancer-causing chemical benzene.
3:56PM ( 45 minutes ago )
Trump tried to choke Russia probe, oust Mueller, report says
Special counsel Robert Mueller's report revealed to a waiting nation Thursday that President Donald Trump had tried to seize control of the Russia probe and force Mueller's removal
3:38PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
The Latest: House chair to subpoena for full Mueller report
The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee says he'll be issuing a subpoena for the full special counsel report and the underlying materials
2:11PM ( 2 hours ago )
The Latest: Barr to send less redacted version to Congress
Attorney General William Barr says a version of special counsel Robert Mueller's report with fewer redactions will be made available to a small group of lawmakers
1:19PM ( 3 hours ago )
Trump tried to seize control of Mueller probe, report says
Special counsel Robert Mueller's report revealed to a waiting nation Thursday that President Donald Trump had tried to seize control of the Russia probe and force Mueller's removal
12:58PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Elections
The Latest: Schumer mocks Barr's news conference on report
The Senate's top Democrat is mocking Attorney General William Barr's news conference on special counsel Robert Mueller's report as a "campaign press conference" for President Donald Trump
10:39AM ( 6 hours ago )
The Latest: House asks Mueller to testify by May 23
The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee is asking special counsel Robert Mueller to testify before his panel as soon as possible about his report on the Trump campaign and Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election
10:17AM ( 6 hours ago )
The Latest: Barr to give Congress less redacted report
Attorney General William Barr says he will allow Congress to view special counsel Robert Mueller's report with nothing redacted other than grand jury information
10:07AM ( 6 hours ago )
General Presidential Election News
Putin envoy in Caracas rejects US revival of Monroe Doctrine
Venezuela's reliance on Russia is growing amid the country's unfolding crisis, and Vladimir Putin's point man in Caracas is pushing back against the U.S. revival of a doctrine used for generations to justify military interventions in the region
3:31PM ( 1 hour ago )
San Francisco's campy "Beach Blanket Babylon" show to end
The campy "Beach Blanket Babylon" musical revue that has been a must-see for San Francisco tourists for 45 years is coming to an end
3:31PM ( 1 hour ago )
IPO mania: Zoom zooms, Pinterest pins down Wall Street
Zoom, Pinterest soar beyond IPO prices in market debut
3:30PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Ex-Virginia Gov. McAuliffe won't run for president in 2020
Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe won't run for president in 2020
9:59PM ( 18 hours ago )
AP sources: Ex-Virginia Gov. McAuliffe to rule out 2020 run
AP sources: Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe won't run for president in 2020
8:21PM ( 20 hours ago )
Harris, Booker miss most votes of senators running in 2020
Kamala Harris and Cory Booker miss most votes of senators running for president in 2020, according to an Associated Press analysis of congressional data
4:59PM ( 23 hours ago )
AP Elections - Political Conventions
The Latest: Top Democrat says Barr is trying to spin report
The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee says the attorney general is "taking unprecedented steps to spin" the special counsel's Russia investigation
8:43PM ( 19 hours ago )
Health care companies weigh on US stocks; key indexes mixed
Stocks are mixed in afternoon trading on Wall Street, erasing the market's modest gains from a day earlier
3:32PM ( 1 day ago )
Ben Affleck, Susan Sarandon, other stars donate to 2020 Dems
Fundraising reports show celebrities reaching into their pockets to donate to Democratic presidential candidates in the early months of the nomination race
3:05PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Elections - Campaigns
A beleaguered Trump feared 'the end of my presidency'
Trump Agonistes: Mueller report uncovers perilous moments for the president and times when aides acted to save Trump from himself
4:34PM ( 7 minutes ago )
'A good day': Trump claims victory with Mueller report out
Even before the world got a glimpse at the redacted version of the special counsel's report, President Donald Trump was trying once more to frame the moment as a political victory.
4:26PM ( 16 minutes ago )
America's 1st female astronaut candidate, Jerrie Cobb, dies
America's first female astronaut candidate, pilot Jerrie Cobb, has died
4:25PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Was Trump trying to silence Cohen? Mueller wasn't sure
Special counsel Robert Mueller says some evidence suggests President Donald Trump may have tried to discourage his former fixer from cooperating with federal authorities
4:10PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Held at bay, Gaudreau hopes to ignite Flames in Game 5
Calgary heads back home for Game 5 in a precarious situation. The top seed in the West trails Colorado 3-1 in the best-of-seven series.
4:10PM ( 32 minutes ago )