Bloomberg News reporter Christie Smythe got divorced, quit her reporting job, and froze her eggs in pursuit of a romantic relationship with Martin Shkreli, she told Elle.
Smythe broke the news that Shkreli was under federal investigation in 2015, before becoming increasingly entranced with him.
Her email exchanges with him were held up during his sentencing as evidence that he showed no remorse, and may have contributed to his seven-year, ongoing sentence.
Shkreli told Elle he wishes Smythe “the best of luck in her future endeavors” but Smythe says she’ll wait for him.
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Lorsque vous êtes amoureux, vous êtes amoureux. When you’re in love, you’re in love. Even when your amore is Martin Shkreli.Bloomberg News reporter Christie Smythe quit her job and divorced her husband to pursue a romantic relationship with the disgraced “Pharma Bro,” who’s about halfway through a seven-year prison sentence for securities fraud. She revealed her obsession in a profile for Elle, where she said she “fell down the rabbit hole.””I’m happy here. I feel like I have purpose,” Smythe told reporter Stephanie Clifford.Smythe first became familiar with Shkreli, a pharmaceutical executive, while covering white-collar crime for Bloomberg News. She broke the story, in 2015, that he was under federal investigation for breaking securities laws. That same year, in an unrelated matter, he became infamous for raising the price of the 62-year-old life-saving drug Daraprim from $13.50 to $750 per pill.
Smythe regularly covered Shkreli’s antics and became close to him, seeking to write an in-depth profile of him. She never got that profile, but she did upend her life. Entranced with him, she divorced her husband and, at Shkreli’s suggestion, froze her eggs so that they could start a family together when he gets out of prison, as early as 2023, Clifford writes.In the Elle article, Smythe talks about maintaining a relationship with Shkreli while he’s incarcerated. She spent hours traveling to and from his prison. She printed out internet memes about him on glossy photo paper. They shared their first kiss in prison, in a visitor’s room smelling of chicken wings.The relationship may have caused problems for Shkreli. During his sentencing, the judge overseeing the case cited emails exchanged between him and Smythe as evidence that he was not remorseful, which Shkreli said led to a longer sentence, according to Smythe.In the years since Shkreli was sentenced, Smythe has often tweeted defensively about Shkreli. After management at Bloomberg News told her they violated ethics rules, she quit.
“Ms. Smythe’s conduct with regard to Mr. Shkreli was not consistent with expectations for a Bloomberg journalist,” a Bloomberg spokesperson told Elle. “It became apparent that it would be best to part ways. Ms. Smythe tendered her resignation, and we accepted it.”After the Elle story was published, Smythe tweeted in defense of her relationship with Shkreli.—Christie Smythe (@ChristieSmythe) December 21, 2020—Christie Smythe (@ChristieSmythe) December 21, 2020—Christie Smythe (@ChristieSmythe) December 21, 2020When Elle reached out to Shkreli asking for comment about the story, he said only “Mr. Shkreli wishes Ms. Smythe the best of luck in her future endeavors.”Smythe said she’ll wait for him.