Janel Grant's pauses lawsuit against Vince McMahon, WWE, & John Laurinaitis as DOJ continues investigation

The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York officially filed a notice of appearance
Vince McMahon Resigns From W.W.E.'s Parent Board Amid Sexual Assault Inquiry
Vince McMahon Resigns From W.W.E.'s Parent Board Amid Sexual Assault Inquiry / John Moore/GettyImages

On Thursday, Janel Grant's council announced that she had been granted a stay in her case, pending a non-public investigation. The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) officially filed a notice of appearance. Grant has agreed to the stay.

In January, Grant filed a lawsuit against Vince McMahon, WWE, and John Laurinaitis. She alleges sexual abuse, sex trafficking, and emotional distress among other offenses.

Grant's attorney, Ann Callis, released the following statement:

“Ms. Grant has consented to a request by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York to stay her case against Mr. McMahon, WWE and Mr. Laurinaitis, pursuant to a pending non-public investigation. We will cooperate with all appropriate next steps.”

The stay or pause in Grant's lawsuit is related to the federal grand jury investiagtion into McMahon. Last August, WWE announced that McMahon was served with a federal grand jury subpoena. A search warrant was excecuted on July 17, 2023. During a Q3 Financial Earnings call, TKO listed McMahon as a "liabilitiy" and a "risk factor".

Vince McMahon's attorney, Jessica Rosenberg, released this statement:

“We remain confident the evidence will prove Ms. Grant’s allegations are false and her complaint is nothing more than a fabricated, vindictive narrative from a disgruntled former girlfriend.”

Last month, McMahon sought private arbitration, as did WWE and Laurinaitis. Laurinaitis previously corroborated some of Grant's lawsuit and claimed to be a victim of McMahon's himself. B.J. Bethel notes that this action by the U.S. Attorney also pauses the motions for arbitration that were filed by McMahon, WWE, and Laurinatis.

In Grant's lawsuit, she said that there are four corporate officers who were aware of her relationship with McMahon. Thurston, Brandon Pollock, and Tim Marchman independently verified their identities with Callis confirming. Corporate Officer No. 1 is WWE President, Nick Khan. He is the only one of the Corporate Officers still employed by WWE.

Former WWE COO Brad Blum was revealed to be Corporate Officer No. 2. He quietly resigned in April. McMahon's daughter and former interim WWE CEO and Chairwoman, Stephanie, is said to be Corporate Officer No. 3. Husband and WWE CCO Paul Levesque brought Stephanie out to the crowd during Night 2 of WrestleMania 40. She was also briefly on RAW to announce WWE draft picks.

The former head of WWE's legal department, Brian Nurse is reportedly Corporate Officer No.4. He left the company sometime in 2020. Grant says in her lawsuit that Nurse offered her the job in WWE in 2019, but she was never onboarded or given clear duties.

The SDNY is conducting several high profile criminal investigations including Sean "Diddy" Combs, Harvey Weinstein, and Donald Trump. On the same day that the U.S. Attorney filed notice of a stay, former President and WWE Hall of Famer Trump was found guilty of 34 charges in a hush money trial. McMahon's wife, Linda, served Trump's cabinet as administrator of the Small Business Administration. In 2019, she resigned to join America First Action as chair. It is a a pro-Trump Super PAC that worked to get him re-elected in 2020.