Miss Universe

Miss Universe to take ‘necessary legal action’ amid Paula Shugart’s beef with Anne Jakrajutatip


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Miss Universe to take ‘necessary legal action’ amid Paula Shugart’s beef with Anne Jakrajutatip

Owner Anne Jakrajutatip speaks during the Miss Universe 2023 coronation night.

Anne Jakrajutatip's Instagram

The organization emphasizes that CEO Anne Jakrajutatip has 'fostered a climate of freedom and equality' in the pageant

MANILA, Philippines – The Miss Universe Organization (MUO) disclosed that they will take “all necessary legal action” to address the “unethical attempts” to malign their organization. 

In a press release posted on their website, MUO emphasized that they will not be “swayed by unfounded allegations” against them despite having been recently hounded by “misinformation and attempts to smear” their organization. 

“We have been informed of malicious attempts by certain individuals to tarnish the reputation of our organization by spreading false accusations. These individuals have engaged in the manipulation of digital content and the distortion of facts for personal gain,” the organization said. “We will take all necessary legal action to address these unethical attempts to besmirch our organization.”

Although MUO didn’t specify anyone in particular, their statement came days after former Miss Universe president Paula Shugart said that she’s considering legal action against the franchise’s current owner Anne Jakrajutatip. Shugart alleged that Jakrajutatip accused her of being “corrupt” and “[taking] money ‘under the table’ to secure placements in Miss Universe competitions.” Moreover, several titleholders and candidates from the previous Miss Universe pageants came to the defense of Shugart, leaving comments of support in her post. 

In their press release, MUO stressed that their “selection process has long been synonymous with fairness and integrity.” They also noted the judging panel of every Miss Universe edition is “comprised of people of unwavering ethics, credibility, and autonomy.” 

Despite the allegations, MUO highlighted their commitment to their mission of “[offering] equal opportunity and honor the beauty found in every individual, regardless of background or ethnicity.” 

“Our steadfast dedication to inclusion is exemplified by the leadership of our CEO, Anne Jakrajutatip, whose unwavering dedication has fostered a climate of freedom and equality through her actions,” they added. Notably, Jakrajutatip has yet to respond to Shugart’s allegations.

MUO then asked their supporters to “stand firmly” with them in upholding the organization’s ideals. “Together, we will safeguard the principles of inclusivity, transparency, and integrity, ensuring that they remain central to all of our efforts,” they concluded their statement. 

It was in October 2022 when Jakrajutatip’s JKN Global Group acquired the Miss Universe organization for $20 million. The company also owns Miss USA and Miss Teen USA. Meanwhile, Shugart, who joined the MUO in 1998 and got appointed president in 2001, exited the beauty pageant franchise in November 2023. – Rappler.com

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