One of New York’s most high-profile gossip columnists has been suspended in the wake of allegations that he tried to shake down a billionaire by charging him to keep negative stories out of the press.

N.Y. Daily News:

FBI agents are still gathering evidence in the New York Post scandal, as the investigation into a Page Six reporter’s extortion of a billionaire investor accelerates, sources said yesterday.

E-mails and videotaped conversations are the key pieces of evidence of the shakedown in which longtime Page Six staffer Jared Paul Stern asked businessman Ron Burkle for $220,000 in return for a year’s “protection” against false items on the gossip page.

“We are cooperating with the ongoing investigation,” said David Fine, a former federal prosecutor who is one of Burkle’s lawyers.


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