July 11, 2011- Washington, D.C. –Today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) called on the House and Senate to investigate whether journalists working for Rupert Murdoch’s News International (NI), owned by News Corp., have hacked into the voicemail of Americans.
Despite claims by NI executives that the phone hacking scandal enveloping Murdoch and his media empire was confined to the now-defunct News of the World, new evidence shows other Murdoch papers used the same tactics. Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was repeatedly targeted for more than a decade by other Murdoch publications.
Further, a former New York City police officer claims he was offered money by News of the World journalists to retrieve the phone records of 9/11 victims and their families.
“It is becoming increasingly clear this scandal was not perpetrated by a few rogue reporters, but was systematically orchestrated at the highest levels of News Corp.,” said CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan. “If Mr. Murdoch’s employees can be so brazen as to target the British prime minister, then it is not unreasonable to believe they also might hack into the voicemails of American politicians and citizens.”
NI executives repeatedly have claimed only a few “rogue” reporters at News of the World were involved in the hacking. In 2007, Les Hinton, one of Mr. Murdoch’s closest advisors and now the chief executive officer of Dow Jones, which publishes the Wall Street Journal, testified – it now appears untruthfully – before a parliamentary committee that the hacking was limited to a single reporter. Fox News and the New York Post are also owned by News Corp.