WWE CEO Vince McMahon 'paid former employee lover $3MILLION to stay quiet about secret affair' with probe underway | The Sun

VINCE McMahon, chairman and CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, allegedly paid off a female employee to keep their affair a secret, according to a report on Wednesday.

The WWE board is investigating the $3million settlement signed in January 2022 barring the former employee from discussing her relationship with McMahon, 76.

An investigation began in April, finding non-disclosure agreements involving claims made by former female WWE employees of misconduct by McMahon and John Laurinaitis, the head of talent relations at WWE, the Wall Street Journal reported.

New York-based law firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP has been retained by the board's eight independent directors to conduct the investigation, said people familiar with the board inquiry.

Preliminary findings revealed that McMahon allegedly used personal funds to pay the former female employees who signed the agreements.

Emails from someone claiming to be a friend of the woman who had the alleged relationship with McMahon were found by the WWE board.


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The emails claimed that the employee was hired by the company as a paralegal in 2019 with a salary of $100,000 before it was bumped up to $200,000 after she and McMahon had allegedly begun their sexual relationship.

It was also claimed that McMahon "gave her like a toy" to Laurinaitis, 59. In 2021, the former employee became an assistant to Laurinaitis after moving from the legal department before she left the company.

"My friend was so scared she quit after Vince McMahon and lawyer Jerry paid her millions of dollars to shut up," wrote the person who sent the initial email.

The email appears to be referring to McMahon's attorney, Jerry McDevitt, who wrote to the Wall Street Journal that the paralegal hadn't made any claims of harassment against McMahon and that "WWE did not pay any monies" to the former employee "on her departure."

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McMahon has been married to Linda McMahon since 1966 with whom he shares two children, Shane and Stephanie. Linda served as the administrator of the Small Business Administration under President Donald Trump.

A WWE spokesperson told The Journal that the company is fully cooperating with the board inquiry and that the relationship with the former employee was consensual, adding that the company takes the allegations seriously and is dealing with them appropriately.

The Journal reported that the non-disclosure agreement gave the 41-year-old ex-paralegal an upfront payment of $1million and an additional $2million in payments over five years.

Laurinaitis, who formerly went by the name Johnny Ace, has worked for WWE since 2001 in several roles, most recently serving as the company's top talent recruiter.

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McMahon bought Capitol Wrestling Corporation, the holding company that owned the then-World Wrestling Federation from his father, Vincent J McMahon, in 1982.

McMahon expanded the company during the pro-wrestling boom in the 1980s and over the years, WWE has cited McMahon as the key to the company's success.

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