AceShowbiz - %cHulk Hogan% came out more than victorious on Friday, March 18 after a Florida judge awarded him $115 million in damages for the case against celebrity site Gawker. The WWE legend had asked for a $100 million when he filed the lawsuit three years ago.
The six-person jury had to consider the case for about six hours and eventually determined that Gawker founder Nick Denton, who acted as defendant, was guilty as was the site's former editor in chief Albert J. Daulerio. Hogan was compensated $55 million for financial damages and $60 million for emotional distress.
Gawker published a sex tape of Hogan and his then-best friend Bubba "the Love Sponge" Clem's wife Heather. Though he also sued Bubba and Heather, Hogan thought Gawker was the most responsible in invading his privacy and putting him in emotional distress. "It's turned my world upside down. The main thing is I was concerned about my children and my new wife, Jennifer," Hogan said in a court session earlier this month.
Hogan, real name Terry G. Bollea, reportedly sobbed after hearing the verdict. "We're exceptionally happy with the verdict," Hogan's team said in a statement after the win. "We think it represents a statement as to the public's disgust with the invasion of privacy disguised as journalism. The verdict says no more."
On the other side, Denton argued that the jury did not hear all the facts and was ready to fight back. "We feel very positive about the appeal that we have already begun preparing, as we expect to win this case ultimately," he said after the verdict. The trial will continue to establish punitive damages and Gawker is required to post a bond before appealing, which is set at $50 million.