May 25th, 2013
07:18 PM ET
5 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. DJ Reality

    I love Fox's fake anger and their lies. They know fully that the IRS will not be of Obama care but they keep saying so. And what is up with Dr. Krauthammer? Why does a doctor of Psychiatry need to lower himself and work a Fox. I once thought he was once a great man. Bot now he is just another Fox news hack, .

    May 25, 2013 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  2. Bill Davis

    Any government employees disclosing secret information that puts our people in harms way should be investigated as well as in reporter that is part of it. Why isn't Congress more outraged with that? I know they don't have a problem with national security being compromised under this POTUS

    May 25, 2013 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  3. oh please

    Sorry, the public doesn't need to know everything, an I am glad the govt is trying to stop all these leaks of classified info. Remember when countries needed spies to get info? Now all they need to do is watch the news as we give them what they need to know because of some reporter trying to break a story, and a traitor to the US feeding them info.

    May 25, 2013 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  4. martiniano

    Nothing on the Marc h on Mo nsanto CNN? Thousands came out in San Diego. All kinds of people, even the cops marching with us and smiling. A passing fire engine blared the horn and gave smiles and thumbs up to the long line of marchers. If more Americans knew what was going on with seed ownership they would have been out there with us.

    May 25, 2013 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  5. G_Edwards

    "The government's notice did not detail the extent of the investigation, in which the government labeled Rosen a possible co-conspirator."

    In other words, the notification was nice, but in no way indicated the BS extent of it.


    May 25, 2013 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  6. ice9load

    There's the corporations and the govt. The rest of us are bit players. Had Rosen not been facing outward he would have seen the knife coming.

    May 25, 2013 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    anyone who actually believes in the crap that Fox news spews out should check themselves out.

    May 25, 2013 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  8. lottie

    fox is making a big deal . They are not a news agency but a scandal rag playing on false indignation,

    May 25, 2013 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  9. Jack

    Fox News, Now that the shoe is the other foot! Isn't about time for to make public apologize to the Department of Justice, I am waiting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 25, 2013 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  10. DJ

    Am I surprised. Fix News would do anything to discredit this administration. It is legitimate to question the government's crackdown on media but don't lie and then you are more of a culprit than they are ...

    May 25, 2013 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  11. Data Driven

    "The Justice Department has come under scrutiny this month" blah blah

    At some point, does the Press come under scrutiny? I know you guys are protecting your own, but the more this story gets filled out, the less impressive the Press looks. It's also worth noting that Holder acquired warrants from judges for these investigations. Where's the big controversy?

    If this was 2003, instead of 2013, this story would scarcely be reported except by treasonous liberal blogs. That about the size of it, Media? Those of us criticizing the Bush Administration for ACTUAL illegal activity were "emboldening the enemy". Clearly, a different standard obtains for the Obama Administration, even for LEGAL activity ... such as, LEGAL investigations into breaches of national security.

    May 25, 2013 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  12. gnubieguy

    Foxnews less than forthcoming to it's reader? Less than honest in it's response. Less than anyone might hope for.

    May 25, 2013 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  13. ChuckAtl

    Candy must have been tlaking with the president again, chummy. Hmmm, does this make what the justice department did right?

    May 25, 2013 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  14. The REAL Truth...

    So here we have it.. some facts and truth among the ongoing Obstructionist rant in DC.
    2010 !!! The Fox news subpoena's for Rosen was issued THREE years ago... How come this just now gets reported??? This should have been made public LONG ago!! What a coincidence that this fake outrage ties to the so-called AP targeting, which was (according to REAL information) a legitimate subpoena of AP records, approved by a judge, as with all warrants. Duh! The right continues to sink lower and lower in their attempts to smear the POTUS.

    May 25, 2013 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  15. Donnie the Lion

    "it never found its way down to Fox News." COVER UP.

    May 25, 2013 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  16. Betty

    So- ?

    May 25, 2013 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  17. Loathstheright

    What? The government wanting to know what treasonous Fox Reporters are doing to harm the country...this will throw the Tea People into an outraged tizzy.

    May 25, 2013 11:33 pm at 11:33 pm |
  18. Joseph

    Fox lying to make the admin look bad?

    May 25, 2013 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  19. jimbojoker

    "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 Saturday."
    "Fox has said it learned of the warrant for e-mails only recently",
    "Fox could have known years ago that the Justice Department was going after its phone records."
    and faux would have us fear an unscrupulous government

    May 25, 2013 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm |
  20. JamesinOKC

    Need to stop lieing....we all know this was to target reporters and help big "O" out in his election last year. Plain and simple, the most corupt gov in our history.

    May 25, 2013 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  21. j

    haha, fox news is the biggest propaganda machine ever. sadly the mo rons flock to them.

    May 25, 2013 11:44 pm at 11:44 pm |
  22. Orwell seen it before

    Roger Ailes.
    What do you expect from Richard Nixon's media massager?
    The messenger of fascist lies, doing their fair & balanced BS.

    May 25, 2013 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  23. Richard Nixon

    so much for the "scandal"

    May 25, 2013 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  24. ericpone

    Wow FOX told a half truth and now they are using it to try and bring down the President. The GOP doesn't need any 'friends' like Fox News.

    May 25, 2013 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  25. parik

    So FOX News was not told by its parent they were subpoenaed three (3) years ago; and they are screaming blood murder now? LOL

    May 25, 2013 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
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