Retired WWE boss Vince McMahon paid $14.6 million to women who have accused him of sexual misconduct, according to recently revealed WWE filings.
The payments were reportedly made between 2006 and 2022.
Documents show that the WWE accounted for the settlements by describing them as “unrecorded expenses.” However, the $14.6 million number exceeds the $12 million amount the Wall Street Journal reported when they initially broke the story about McMahon’s “hush money” payments to former female employees.
The allegations detailed in the Journal’s account stem from an anonymous email tipster who told of millions in secret payments to female employees and former female wrestlers in connection with sexual favors.
One instance includes the account of a former female wrestler who claims she was coerced into oral sex with McMahon and then had her contract terminated after she terminated their sexual relationship. Another account involves a woman hired as a paralegal who was given a substantial raise after beginning a sexual relationship with McMahon. The woman was then reportedly “given” by McMahon to WWE executive John Laurinaitis for sexual favors.
The “unrecorded expenses” account did not go unnoticed by the SEC and other financial regulatory entities, who regularly queried the organization over the nature of the payments.
As for the WWE, the organization stipulated, “All payments underlying the Unrecorded Expenses were or will be paid by Vince McMahon personally.’
McMahon officially retired on Friday from his spot as the longtime head of the sports entertainment company launched by his father. In his retirement statement, McMahon cited his age as a motivating factor and said his daughter Stephanie would serve as co-CEO along with Nick Khan.
“As I approach 77 years old, I feel it’s time for me to retire as Chairman and CEO of WWE. Throughout the years, it’s been a privilege to help WWE bring you joy, inspire you, thrill you, surprise you, and always entertain you,” McMahon said.
“I would like to thank my family for mightily contributing to our success, and I would also like to thank all of our past and present Superstars and employees for their dedication and passion for our brand.
“Most importantly, I would like to thank our fans for allowing us into your homes every week and being your choice of entertainment. I hold the deepest appreciation and admiration for our generations of fans all over the world who have liked, currently like, and sometimes even love our form of Sports Entertainment.”
Jim McMahon is the largest stakeholder in the WWE, owning a 32% share.