- Hulk hogan has received $115m in damages for the release of a sex tape by gossip website, Gawker
- According to Hulk Hogan, the sex tape infringed on his right and affected his career
Retired professional wrestler, Hulk Hogan has noted that the release of the sex tape affected his career tremendously.
Mr. Hogan’s statement comes after a Florida jury awarded him $115m (£79m) after the gossip news website Gawker published a sex tape of the retired professional wrestler.
The sex tape, released by Gawker in 2012 is reported to have infringed on the privacy of the wrestler and the women in the video. Mr Hogan's legal team in the law suit argued that the New York-based website violated his privacy and the video was not newsworthy. The video showed Mr Hogan was secretly recorded having sex with his friend's wife.
Lawyers for Gawker argued that although jurors might find the website's actions distasteful, the concept of freedom of the press was more important to uphold. Mr Hogan's lawyers said Gawker had infringed on the privacy of the wrestler.
Gawker, known for its acerbic tone and aggressive coverage of celebrities, maintained that Mr Hogan's private life was newsworthy because he made it part of his public persona.
However, Hogan lawyer Kenneth Turkel said during the trial that Gawker typified the often anything-goes world of internet publishing. The verdict could lead to more caution among Internet news websites, which frequently have less editorial oversight than traditional media outlets. Gawker's founder Nick Denton and journalist AJ Daulerio were held liable in the lawsuit and Hulk Hogan was awarded $115m for damages.
After the judge’s decision, Mr. Hogan’s lawyer, David Houston, in an interview noted that Hulk Hogan’s victory is not only his victory but also anyone else who's been victimised by tabloid journalism.
Hulk Hogan whose given name is Terry Bollea, was one of the most popular professional wrestlers of the 1980s and 1990s and later starred in his own reality television show with his family. His longtime employer World Wrestling Entertainment cut ties with Mr Hogan in July after he was recorded using racial slurs.