According to an article on wsj.com, WWE board members are “investigating a secret $3 million settlement that longtime chief executive Vince McMahon agreed to pay to a departing employee with whom he allegedly had an affair, according to documents and people familiar with the board inquiry.”
The former employee was said to have been hired as a paralegal in 2019 and a January 2022 separation agreement bars her from discussing the relationship with Mr. McMahon or disparaging him. According to the article, the board’s investigation reportedly began in April and has expanded into other nondisclosure agreements that involve misconduct claims made by other former female WWE employees about McMahon and WWE’s head of talent relations John Laurinaitis. The board members reportedly found out about the $3 million agreement through a series of anonymous emails from a person who said that the former WWE employee was their friend.
“The first email, sent to board members on March 30, alleged that Mr. McMahon, 76 years old, initially hired the woman at a salary of $100,000 but increased it to $200,000 after beginning a sexual relationship with her. The email to the board also alleged that Mr. McMahon ‘gave her like a toy’ to Mr. Laurinaitis. The board is investigating the allegations in the email, the people familiar with the inquiry said.”
An e-mail to the board stated, “my friend was so scared so she quit after Vince McMahon and lawyer Jerry [McDevitt] paid her millions of dollars to shut up.”
A spokesperson for WWE stated that they are taking the allegations seriously and are cooperating fully with the board inquiry.