A week after the FBI announced that they would be probing News Corp on alleged voicemail hacks of 9/11 victims, today the Justice Department is readying subpoenas as they continue an investigation into Rupert Murdoch’s disintegrating media empire.
The Wall Street Journal, a paper managed by Murdoch’s corporation, was the first to break the story today.
An anonymous official associated with the US government told the WSJ that people in power at the DoJ have yet to sign off on the subpoena request but that the investigation was indeed developing. The Journal adds, however, that a person close to News Corp called the filing of subpoenas “a fishing expedition with no evidence to support it.”
Following accusations earlier this month out of Congress, the FBI began investigating last week to see if News Corp illegally hacked into the voicemails of victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks. An overseas scandal involving phone hacks of Brits has marred Murdoch’s media outlets in the UK, and this week it was announced that News Corp could be facing charges of violating an American act that penalizes the bribery of foreign officials for business purposes.
Overseas, News Corp is being tried for paying-off British police to obtain voicemails and other phone hacking charges. Several US congressmen attest that they could have been doing the same with former-NYC cops in hopes of obtaining 9/11-related phone records.
Republican Representative Peter T King of Long Island urged the FBI to begin an investigation last week after Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller said he was willing to bet that News Corp could be linked to alleged 9/11 hacks. “If these allegations are proven true, the conduct would merit felony charges for attempting to violate various federal statutes related to corruption of public officials and prohibitions against wiretapping,” wrote King. “Any person found guilty of this purported conduct should receive the harshest sanctions available under law.”
Murdoch’s News Corp has a heavy media presence in England but is based out of a New York, NY headquarters.
The BBC reported today as well that FBI agents are supposedly trying to reach out to British actor Jude Law, who claims his cell phone was hacked by News Corp-run The Sun while he was at a New York City airport.