Paul Hawthorne/Getty Images
Paul Hawthorne/Getty Images
Hulk Hogan took Gawker Media to the mat—and won.
A rep for the wrestling icon confirms to E! News that a Florida state court has granted the pro-wrestling star's request for a temporary restraining order barring the media firm from posting clips of his now-notorious 30-minute sex tape.
In her ruling Wednesday, Judge Pamela Campbell of the Sixth Judicial Circuit in Pinellas County ordered Gawker Media to remove all the footage of the video from the gossip site and its affiliates and return to Hogan's attorneys all copies and versions of the full-length sex tape, including excerpts, clips, photos and transcripts.
The 59-year-old WWE legend sued Gawker for a whopping $100 million in monetary damages stemming from the tapes release in the form of excerpts that it posted to the web last October.
A rep for the company was unavailable to comment on the injunction.
However, in a motion filed in November in response to Hogan's suit, Gawker Media claimed the footage of Hulk's sexual encounter with Heather Clem—the ex-wife of his friend, radio shock jock Bubba the Love Sponge (real name Todd Alan Clem)—was already "national news" by the time it posted its 101-second excerpt.
The pro-grappler subsequently sued Bubba and Clem as well, and the two sides reached a confidential settlement.
UPDATE April 26, 2013: Gawker Media posted a response to Judge Campbell's ruling on its website stating that while it has agreed to remove the video in question, it won't comply with the order to take down the entire post, citing freedom of speech.
"We publish all manner of stories here. Some are serious, some are frivolous, some are dumb. I am not going to make a case that the future of the Republic rises or falls on the ability of the general public to watch a video of Hulk Hogan f---ing his friend's ex-wife. But the Constitution does unambiguously accord us the right to publish true things about public figures," wrote Gawker spokesman John Cook. "And Campbell's order requiring us to take down not only a very brief, highly edited video excerpt from a 30-minute Hulk Hogan f---ing session but also a lengthy written account from someone who had watched the entirety of that f---ing session, is risible and contemptuous of centuries of First Amendment jurisprudence."
Cook added that Gawker plans to appeal her decision.
"A lawful order from a circuit court judge is a serious thing. While we vehemently disagree with Campbell's order with respect to the video itself, we have chosen to take it down pending our appeal," he said. "But the portion of the order compelling us to remove the entirety of Daulerio's post—his words, his speech—is grossly unconstitutional. We won't take it down."
(Originally published on April 25, 2013 @ 3:19 p.m. PT)