A confidential settlement has been reached in the $110 million lawsuit brought against Cox Radio, Cox DJs Mike "Cowhead" Calta and Matt "Spiceboy" Loyd, and a few other defendants by WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan, according to BayNews9.
The defendants were accused of conspiring to leak Hogan's private sex tape with Heather Clem, the ex-wife of his former friend Bubba "The Love Sponge" Clem, which was filmed back in September 2012. This is the tape that was at the center of Hogan's lawsuit against Gawker several years back. Hogan alleged in the lawsuit that he was a victim of the "radio wars" between Calta and Clem. Calta was accused of using his agent to anonymously leak the video to Gawker, which showed Hogan having sex with Heather.
The lawsuit noted that the sex tape began circulating at the Cox Radio studios in early 2012. Calta, Loyd and Clem all once worked for Cox. Clem's contract with Cox was not renewed in September 2014, but Calta currently works as the morning host for 102.5 The Bone, which is owned by Cox.
This is the same sex tape that was leaked to the National Enquirer in 2015, which led to their story on Hogan using a racial slur on the tape. The fallout from the racist comments debacle led to Hogan losing several business contacts, and WWE temporarily parting ways with him. He and WWE are back on good terms, and have been since July 2018. Hogan will be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame for a second time this year, as a member of the nWo with Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Sean Waltman.
In March 2016, a Pinellas County jury found that Gawker invaded Hogan's privacy by publishing the sex tape, and ordered them to pay more than $140 million in damages to The Hulkster. Gawker ended up going bankrupt and settling with Hogan for $31 million. That was the end of the website.
The remainder of the balance, $110 million, is the amount Hogan was seeking from Cox Radio and the other defendants mentioned above. The defendants all denied the allegations and fought Hogan in court for almost 4 years, until this week when they quietly settled. The settlement was reportedly reached on Thursday, and came before a jury trial was scheduled to begin in January 2021.
There is no word yet on the settlement, and Hogan did not return a request for comment. Cox Radio also declined to comment.