A former Los Angeles Times reporter has sued the paper for wrongful firing and discrimination after the organization allegedly warned him to "go easy" on former Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, reports USA Today's The Big Lead.
Sports columnist TJ Simers claims the Times told him not to write about the Mattel Children's Charity because there were concerns he was leading Dodgers' players to send donations there rather than to McCourt's Dodgers Charity. Simers alleges that the paper began to tell him to back off after McCourt had a meeting with Eddie Hartenstein, one of the Times' editors.
Simers' also says that he and three other writers were told not to write any pieces that criticized McCourt. He recently left the Times and now writes for the Orange County Register.
McCourt sold his stake in the Dodgers to the Guggenheim group in March, 2012 after very public divorce proceedings and bankruptcy claims. The team sold for $2 billion, the largest sum ever paid for a sports franchise.