Karen McDougal claims that American Media Inc., the company that owns the National Enquirer, paid her $150,000 to keep quiet about having an illicit relationship with Trump.
"A.M.I lied to me, made empty promises, and repeatedly intimidated and manipulated me," McDougal said in a statement. "I just want the opportunity to set the record straight and move on with my life, free from this company, its executives, and its lawyers."
THR reports that McDougal made a point to note that David J. Pecker, the chief executive of AMI, is a friend of Trump's.
"A quarter billion dollar company posing as a media organization systematically intimidated and silenced Karen McDougal in order to achieve its political and financial ends, and she will no longer be quiet," Peter K. Stris, McDougal's attorney, also said in a statement. "Through efforts including the collusion of her own lawyer, A.M.I has consistently deceived and manipulated Ms. McDougal through an illegitimate contract. We are confident that the so-called contract will be invalidated, and are eager for Ms. McDougal to be able to move forward with her life with the privacy she deserves."
American Media Inc. reportedly responded to McDougal's statements by saying that her claims against them are "completely without merit."
"Karen McDougal has been free to respond to press inquiries about her relationship with President Trump since 2016," a statement from AMI continued. "Thus, the suggestion that AMI 'silenced' her is completely without merit."
"Rather, Karen signed a contract that gave AMI the editorial discretion to publish her life story, and she promised to write health and fitness columns and appear on the cover of two magazines. ... We have been very proud of Karen McDougal and our work with her," the AMI statement added.0comments
"The relationship has produced good journalism and content for our publications. And until very recently, it was our understanding that Ms. McDougal was satisfied with our editorial approach to her work with AMI's publications. Her lawsuit is the first time AMI has learned of her desire to go a different direction. AMI has a valid contract with Karen and we look forward to reaching an amicable resolution satisfactory to her and to AMI," the statement concluded.
McDougal is the second woman from the adult entertainment industry to sue for the right to be ale to speak freely about an alleged relationship with the U.S. President, with the first being adult film star Stormy Daniels.