| WASHINGTON, June 26
WASHINGTON, June 26 More than a year after
asking for and receiving emails from News Corp's U.S.
operation related to allegations of phone hacking and bribery,
the FBI is still investigating whether British-based
representatives of the media company may have broken U.S. law,
sources familiar with the matter said on Thursday.
The FBI probe into Rupert Murdoch's News Corp has not ended
even though some former senior Murdoch aides were acquitted of
charges by a British criminal court jury, the sources said.
A law enforcement source and a second source familiar with
the matter said the FBI is probing whether News Corp businesses
or representatives may have violated U.S. laws, most notably the
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which forbids U.S.-based
companies from paying bribes to foreign government officials.
News Corp is headquartered in New York City.
The company confirmed on Thursday that its lawyers turned
over more than 80,000 emails extracted from U.S.-based servers
to U.S. Justice Department investigators more than a year ago.
Sources said the emails were turned over via Williams and
Connolly, a prominent Washington D.C. law firm which the company
had hired to help it deal with fallout, including possible U.S.
investigations, from British investigations into alleged phone
hacking and payments to U.K. government officials by
representatives of News Corp's London-based newspapers.
Asked about the turnover of emails, a News Corp executive
told Reuters: "We voluntarily produced material to the
Department of Justice more than a year ago and we understand
that material was fully available to the authorities in the UK
well before the (recently ended) trial."
The executive declined to be named.
In the criminal court trial which recently ended in London,
a jury declined to convict defendants on charges related to
alleged payments to public officials.
At the trial, Andy Coulson, a former editor of News Corp's
now-shuttered News of the World Sunday tabloid and former chief
spokesman for British Prime Minister David Cameron, was
convicted of a conspiracy related to phone-hacking.
But Rebekah Brooks, another former editor of News Corp
tabloids who subsequently became chief executive of his London
publishing empire, was acquitted of all charges, as were her
husband, other associates, and a former News of the World
Two sources familiar with the matter said U.K. authorities
are planning to prosecute nine more criminal cases involving
current or former News Corp journalists which are understood to
include allegations of possible corrupt payments to British
Reuters reported in February 2012 that an internal watchdog
unit set up by News Corp had handed over to U.K. investigators
emails and financial records allegedly charting the payment of
more than 100,000 pounds to police contacts, mostly in sums of
under 1,000 pounds.
A company source said at the time that the records showed
many or most of the payments' intended recipients were listed in
company records under false names.
(Reporting By Mark Hosenball; Editing by Tom Brown)