Gawker Founder Nick Denton Files for Bankruptcy Protection

Gawker Media filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June.

ByAaron Katersky and Lesley Messer
August 01, 2016, 3:28 PM

— -- Gawker Media founder Nick Denton today filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy to protect his personal assets from former wrestler Hulk Hogan, according to paperwork obtained by ABC News.

Denton owes $125 million to Hogan, according to his bankruptcy filing, which helps keep Hogan from collecting on his jury award.

The British internet entrepreneur has $100 million to $500 million in liabilities and his assets are worth $10 million to $50 million, according to his filing.

A.J. Daulerio, a former Gawker editor who was also named in Hogan's lawsuit, is expected to file for bankruptcy, too, according to Politico.

"Gawker Media Group’s resilient brands and people will thrive under new ownership, when the sale closes in the next few weeks," Denton tweeted around the time his paperwork was filed. "On this bitter day for me, I am consoled by the fact that my colleagues will soon be freed from this tech billionaire’s vendetta."

In March, a jury awarded Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea, $140 million in compensatory and punitive damages after he sued the media company for invasion of privacy. The lawsuit stemmed from a 2012 Gawker post that featured a portion of a sex tape recorded without Hogan's knowledge.

Gawker Media has appealed the ruling, and it came to light in May that PayPal CEO Peter Thiel had bankrolled Hogan's lawsuit.

Gawker filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June and is up for sale.

David Houston, Hogan's legal counsel, told ABC News in a statement today, "Following a lengthy trial, a jury verdict and much legal maneuvering, the time has come for Nick Denton to accept responsibility for the decisions he made and the rewards he reaped based on the suffering and humiliation of others. Mr. Denton has spent vast amounts of time and money attempting to dodge his responsibility and a judge has subsequently determined that he misled the court in these efforts.

"The Appellate court, in which he has guaranteed victory over Mr. Bollea, is not the puppet he thought it would be. His bankruptcy has nothing to do with who paid Mr. Bollea's legal bills, and everything to do with Denton's own choices and accountability. If even one person has been spared the humiliation that Mr. Bollea suffered, this is a victory."

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