The FBI is investigating allegations that News of the World journalists tried to hack into the phones of 9/11 victims
The FBI has launched an investiagtion into reports that News of the World journalists hacked into the phones of 9/11 victims in New York. This is the first official US enquiry into Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation activities.
New York based News Corporation is the parent company of News International – the UK firm at the centre of the phone-hacking scandal. The inquiry follows calls from numerous politicians and the relatives of 9/11 victims for a full investigation.
‘The thought that anyone would have hacked into the phones of either those who were killed, those who were missing, the family members, during that tragic time… is contemptible,’ says Republican Congressman Peter King, who urged the director of the FBI Robert Mueller to open investigations into the 9/11 allegations.
‘There were allegations, I want the FBI to investigate them, I’m not making any conclusions at all,’ he says.
Relatives of 9/11 victims have expressed relief that the FBI have launched this investigation. Sally Regenhard, whose son died in the World Trade Centre, says: ‘The FBI is being very responsive in acting on our call for a full investigation.’
News Corporation may also face prosecution under other US laws. Following reports that News of the World staff paid police officers in the UK during their phone-hacking activities, several Congress members have called for the company to be held accountable under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
The Sunday tabloid, which was owned by Mr Murdoch, printed its final issue last weekend in response to claims that its staff hacked into phones belonging to murder victims, politicians, and celebrities.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, which is owned by News Corporation, Mr Murdoch said that his company has handled the situation ‘extremely well in every way possible,’ but admitted they had made ‘minor mistakes.’
Commenting on the negative media coverage he is facing, Mr Murdoch says he is ‘just getting annoyed. I’ll get over it. I’m tired.’