May 25th, 2013
07:18 PM ET
2 years ago

Sources: News Corp long aware of Fox News subpoenas

Updated Monday 5/27 3:00 a.m. ET

(CNN)– The parent company of Fox News was aware years ago that the Justice Department was targeting one of its reporters in a leak investigation, sources said.

One law enforcement source said the Justice Department notified a media organization three years ago of a subpoena for detailed telephone records, and a second told CNN that organization was Fox News.

After that news broke, a Fox News executive said the Justice Department notified Fox's parent company News Corporation of the subpoena in May 2010.  But Fox News itself apparently never got the word.

The subpoena came as the Justice Department was investigating Stephen Kim, a former State Department worker accused of the unauthorized disclosure of sensitive information to James Rosen, a Fox News reporter.

It is standard procedure for Justice Department officials to notify news organizations when they subpoena an outlet or its reporters.

MORE: Choice of Holder to lead leak review questioned

CNN and other media outlets have previously reported a separate Justice Department query into Rosen's e-mails. With the approval of Attorney General Eric Holder, Justice officials obtained a warrant from a federal judge to access Rosen's e-mails.

While Fox News is now acknowledging that the Justice Department notified its parent company about the phone records search, that notice apparently did not include anything about the separate search of Rosen's e-mail.

"In the investigation that led to the indictment of Stephen Kim, the government issued subpoenas for toll records for five phone numbers associated with the media," a law enforcement source told CNN. "Consistent with Department of Justice policies and procedures, the government provided notification of those subpoenas nearly three years ago by certified mail, facsimile and e-mail."

News Corporation spokesman Nathaniel Brown responded Sunday night in a carefully worded statement.

“While we don't take issue with the DOJ's account that they sent a notice to News Corp, we do not have a record of ever having received it,” Brown said.  “We are looking into this matter.”

In a New York Times article, Lawrence A. Jacobs, a former chief legal officer for News Corporation, said he never saw a notification about the phone records.  He left the post in June 2011.

“I would have remembered getting a fax from the Justice Department,” Jacobs told the Times in an interview on Sunday. “These are not the kinds of things that happen every day.”

Fox has said it learned of the warrant for e-mails only recently, and newly released court documents show the government was trying to keep the investigation under seal.  The network did not disclose to its viewers that the phone records had been subpoenaed.

The government's notice did not detail the extent of the investigation, in which the government labeled Rosen a possible co-conspirator. An FBI affidavit used to obtain the warrant for Rosen's e-mails described him as potentially being an "aider and abettor and/or co-conspirator" to the crime of disclosing government secrets.

The Justice Department has come under scrutiny this month as news broke of two government probes into reporters' records. Besides the Rosen case, the Associated Press announced the department had dug into the phone records of its reporters, including work, cell, and home lines.

–CNN's Julie Cannold contributed to this report


Filed under: Fox News • Justice Department
soundoff (277 Responses)
  1. jkane sfl the gop national disgrace party will be swept out like the trash they are in2014 ?

    Fox,the unfair and unbalanced comedy channel only has credibility with the gop brain dead and people stranded on deserted islands and maybe in north Korea and somila.

    May 25, 2013 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  2. pep

    It's not called FauxNews for nothing.

    May 25, 2013 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  3. Ajax

    Interesting that they waited until now to make such a big noise about it.

    May 25, 2013 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  4. Cynical View

    Doesn't this kinda – you know – make this a COMPLETE non"scandal"?

    May 25, 2013 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  5. MollyBee

    Well, we all know that F_X is slimy and evil. Their antics every day remind me of a bunch of bratty school kids on a playground. They are the worst examples of journalism EVER. Twisting, lying, misleading, omitting and doctoring information should be a crime in itself. Aftern all, they call themselves "fair and balanced news". Any adult watching their crap either is really uneducated OR someone who agrees with dirty tactics to accomplish political goals. Many of us hope F_X falls....hard!

    May 25, 2013 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  6. Gurgyl

    Any one that watches Fox in 21st century got to an idiot.

    May 25, 2013 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  7. jumpinjezebel

    Faux Noise lying about something??? How do you know Faux is lying – Someone's lips are moving!!

    May 25, 2013 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  8. jazzrack

    "In the investigation that led to the indictment of Stephen Kim, the government issued subpoenas for toll records for five phone numbers associated with the media," a law enforcement source told CNN. "Consistent with Department of Justice policies and procedures, the government provided notification of those subpoenas nearly three years ago by certified mail, facsimile and e-mail."

    ok so that explains only 5 phone records, when did they notify them about the rest of the phone records, emails, ect.

    and the justice dept. doesn't seem to mind leaks so much when they are the one leaking.... who leaked this "story"

    May 25, 2013 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  9. yalibi

    In view of the Administration’s dubious record as of late as well as CNN’s startling silence on the cases involving the AP and Fox News, the infamous “sources” as well as CNN’s prominent attempt at disparaging Fox hold little water. It is fascinating, however, to what lengths the Administration (or “law enforcement sources” … of course anonymous) and CNN will go to suppress Fox’s trustworthiness and ratings. I wonder when we will reach the real lows with Jeff Zucker’s tactics to beat Fox in the ratings. How about a return to genuine and objective news reporting?

    May 25, 2013 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  10. Vumba4

    Really?

    May 25, 2013 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  11. Jewels

    Shocker - tied to Rupert Murdoch - and shady, questionable activity? No couldn't be....

    May 25, 2013 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  12. Ken from FL

    This is unbelievable; CNN is going after FOX for the AG's violation of the First Amendment. I guess the thrill is back for CNN, eh? Gotta watch out for our bud in the WH, right?

    May 25, 2013 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  13. Har de har har

    Ribbit. That's what frogs say.

    May 25, 2013 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  14. Muamar Anwar Sadam Husadein

    Warrants, wiretaps, subpoenas of mainly enemies of the DNC. Set the wayback machine to William Clinton's days. Follow the NSA and FBI's trail of requests for covert warrants on Muhammad Atta. Sorry, he's a friend of the Saudi government, can't spy on him. But we surely can spy on US citizens.

    May 25, 2013 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  15. chatmandu002

    Another attempt to deny and deflect to help Obama and his administration. The Department of InJustice targeting conservative reporters and government workers.

    May 25, 2013 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  16. steve

    FoxNews and the conservative pundits caught in a red handed lie while they try to start a civil uprising.....

    won't matter..these conservative media types thrive on hate..they will never change

    May 25, 2013 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  17. FKKKSNEWS!

    Fixnews at it again.. Can we have some congressional hearings on the validity of fixnews as a real news organization or just plain gossip for the repubican'ts....

    May 25, 2013 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  18. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Another red herring perpetrated by Fox. Imagine that...

    May 25, 2013 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  19. jillib

    Why would anyone be surprised at this information? Fox peddles lies and deceptions on a regular basis, I doubt their "reporters" would know the truth if it slapped them in the face.

    May 25, 2013 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  20. Donkey Party

    Fox trying to lie and mislead people? Say it isn't so.

    May 25, 2013 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  21. Tony Torres

    So what is knew? The people a FAKe (Fox) NEWS are always either omitting or embellishing the news they wants their mostly ignorant fans hear. It is amazing how many haters of this country act like it is all our fall because we elected a Black man to be Prez., they rather this country goes to hell than to give our POTUS any slack. Haters all of them!!

    May 25, 2013 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  22. art

    AP and Foxs are culpable now that MSM like CNN are doing REAL INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM by asking questions...FOX now are staying mum....yeah. Whose chickens are coming home to roost now. YEAH FOX is propaganda and its time to close shop in America. The feds being unto Fox since their debacle in London!!! Fine work AG Holder, love someone whose's very efficient and effective! ALL THE WAY!

    May 25, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  23. Irskan

    I am completely, totally SHOCKED that Fox News could have been lying....

    May 25, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  24. mistamista

    Sadly, no one at Fox News ever actually hears about REAL NEWS....so they won't be talking about it much. Unless the breach occurred in Benghazi and was written on the back of a forged birth certificate of President Obama....they'll never even mention it.

    May 25, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  25. Just Me

    news in your pocket and the world is yours.

    May 25, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
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