A writer for the conservative Daily Caller resigned from the site this weekend after being implicated in an alleged scheme involving disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a story first reported by The Daily Beast.
Right-wing personality Derek Hunter, who also hosted the site’s daily podcast, is “parting ways” with the Daily Caller after the publication of The Daily Beast story, according to a Sunday night statement from publisher Neil Patel. The Daily Caller is also deleting one of Hunter’s stories about Abramoff’s cryptocurrency.
Hunter’s exit comes after Abramoff, who served nearly four years in prison over an earlier influencer-peddling scheme, was indicted Thursday for allegedly breaking a series of laws to promote a cryptocurrency he represented, AML Bitcoin. A complaint filed by SEC attorneys in a related case alleges that Abramoff’s associates secretly paid several authors at media outlets to promote the cryptocurrency—specifically mentioning an article whose description matches an article Hunter wrote about AML Bitcoin.
In his statement, Patel said Hunter “categorically denies” being paid to write any articles. Instead, Patel claims Hunter wrote the story after receiving a tip “from a friend who was an interested party and who failed to disclose that interest.” In contrast, the SEC complaint specifically describes the author of Hunter’s article as “another author paid” by Abramoff’s associates.
Hunter didn’t respond to a request for comment.