Silicon Valley venture capitalist Peter Thiel funded Hulk Hogan's high-profile legal case against Gawker Media, Forbes reported, citing unnamed sources.
Forbes did not provide detail on how the billionaire PayPal co-founder became connected to former wrestling champion Hogan or whether Thiel was the sole backer.
Just earlier this week, Gawker founder Nick Denton told the New York Timesthat he suspected Hogan's lawyer, Charles Harder, was being paid by someone other than Hogan.
"My own personal hunch is that it's linked to Silicon Valley, but that's nothing really more than a hunch," Denton was quoted as saying. "If you're a billionaire and you don't like the coverage of you, and you don't particularly want to embroil yourself any further in a public scandal, it's a pretty smart, rational thing to fund other legal cases."
Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea, won a $140 million lawsuit against Gawker founder Nick Denton and former editor A.J. Daulerio in March, with a Florida jury awarding him $115 million in compensatory damages and $25 million in punitive damages. He had sued the gossip news site over the 2012 publication of a sex tape featuring Hogan and a friend's wife.