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Tabloid King Gets Grounded

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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NO FLY LIST Pecker Flush with cash from a resurgent Us Weekly, Wenner Media CEO Jann Wenner regularly flies around the globe in a plushly appointed private jet. And until recently, his tabloid-publishing rival, American Media's David Pecker, did too.

But the latter may end up in coach if his company's fortunes don't improve soon. Under heavy pressure to stem AMI's bottom line, the owner of the National Enquirer, Star, Globe and sundry other rags has been ordered by his board of directors to stop chartering private planes for his frequent trips between the company's headquarters in Boca Raton and New York, according to insiders.

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"He blew so much cash on that chartered jet, you have no idea," sighs an AMI source.

As the company's fortunes have continued to sink, AMI's anxious investors have taken to clipping Pecker's wings, forcing the famously dictatorial exec to cede much of his control over daily operations. Though Pecker still talks a good game, "They're really running the show," says the source. "David doesn't have the power he had before."

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