LOS ANGELES—Former New York Post gossip columnist Jared Paul Stern, who was fired after rival newspaper the New York Daily News published transcripts of a videotape in which Stern appeared to demand money to put an end to stories about billionaire businessman Ron Burkle, has filed a lawsuit against Burkle, the Daily News, Bill and Hilary Clinton, and Los Angeles public relations executive Mike Sitrick, who represents Burkle.
The suit identifies Sitrick as one of the architects of the sting operation that ended up in the hands of the Daily News, on which Stern seemed to demand a $100,000 payment and a $10,000 a year retainer to stop the Post stories about Burkle. The suit charges Burkle, several employees—including Sitrick and head of security Frank Renzi—and his friends the Clintons on a variety of counts including libel, emotional distress, interference in business relationship, injurious falsehood, abuse of process, and civil conspiracy.
In the suit, Stern characterizes Burkle as “a powerful, politically connected billionaire who socializes with celebrities and carries on sexual liaisons with fashion models, some of whom are under the age of consent.”
Sitrick told the Associated Press that the lawsuit was “preposterous…. We are confident that we will prevail in this action.”