The WWE has severed ties with one of wrestling’s biggest stars of all time after an audio transcript was released in which Hulk Hogan makes racist slurs, People magazine reports.
The wrestler, who went on to a career as an actor, musician and television personality, has offered an apology over the incident, issuing a statement exclusively to People in which he said: “Eight years ago I used offensive language during a conversation. It was unacceptable for me to have used that offensive language; there is no excuse for it; and I apologize for having done it.”
The transcript of the conversation was reportedly published online by the National Enquirer. The transcript reportedly indicates that Hogan repeatedly used the N-word when referring to his daughter’s dating life.
Hogan told People: “This is not who I am. I believe very strongly that every person in the world is important and should not be treated differently based on race, gender, orientation, religious beliefs or otherwise. I am disappointed with myself that I used language that is offensive and inconsistent with my own beliefs.”
The WWE today removed Hogan from the organization’s online Hall of Fame and pulled videos, photos and other references to him from its website, according to the People report.
David Houston, an attorney for Hogan, confirmed that Hogan had officially resigned from the WWE, People reports.
But the publication notes that WWE says Hogan was fired, quoting the organization saying: “WWE terminated its contract with Terry Bollea (a.k.a. Hulk Hogan). WWE is committed to embracing and celebrating individuals from all backgrounds as demonstrated by the diversity of our employees, performers and fans worldwide.”