Hulk Hogan, the 62-year-old wrestler, said during trial on Monday that he was “completely humiliated” by a secretly recorded sex tape published online by Gawker, and is seeking $100 million in damages from the website.
Hogan said the publication of a one-minute, 41-second excerpt of a video of him having consensual sex with the wife of his then-best friend, radio shock jock Bubba the Love Sponge, destroyed his personal and professional life.
Hogan is testifying again today in his lawsuit against Gawker over the tape posted by the website in 2012.
“I was completely humiliated,” Hogan said in a report by Reuters, noting the embarrassment was personal and professional. “It was even embarrassing as my character. Hulk Hogan was embarrassed.”
Hulk Hogan’s legal name is Terry Bollea. The wrestler showed up in court in his signature bandana with a black suit and a cross necklace. He called the Hogan character “completely opposite” to his true personality, which according to him is soft-spoken and non-argumentative. (Awwww…)
Hogan is a longtime champion of World Wrestling Entertainment and reality TV star. His lawyers defended his case by stating he had a right to expect privacy in a private bedroom and the video was filmed without his knowledge.
Gawker attorneys, however, questioned what the wrestler knew about cameras in his friend’s house. (So if Hogan knew about the cameras, it becomes reality TV and hence, legal?)
Gawker claims it had the right under the First Amendment to post the video clip. “Gawker believes this kind of reporting is important,” an attorney for the company, Mike Berry told jurors, explaining that celebrity sex tapes are among the “uncomfortable” topics important to the outlet, known for gossip and media reporting.