FORMER NEWS CORP COUNSEL: If The DOJ Had Issued A Subpoena, I Would've Called Fox News' President Right Away

James Rosen Fox News

There is controversy and dispute about whether or not the Department of Justice ever alerted News Corp. that it ad subpoenaed record of Fox News reporter James Rosen.

To its knowledge, News Corporation says it never received any notification from the Department of Justice  involving a subpoena Fox News reporter James Rosen’s phone records in 2010.

Julie Henderson, a spokeswoman for News Corp., said on Tuesday that the company has no record of ever receiving it, but that it did not dispute that the Justice Department sent the notice. 

The Justice Department has not yet identified the news outlet or reporter involved in the case of Stephen Kim, who was indicted as part of an investigation into the leaking of classified information involving North Korea. In an FBI search warrant, Rosen was labelled a possible “co-conspirator” in the leak.

In a statement provided to Business Insider on Tuesday, a law enforcement official said that it had sent notification by three methods.

“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,” the official said. “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.”

But in an interview with Business Insider, Lon Jacobs, the former worldwide general counsel at News Corp. in 2010, said that he had no recollection of receiving notification by any of those means. He questioned why the Justice Department would only contact News Corp and not Fox News. And he said that if he did receive any such notification, he would have treated it with a certain importance.

“That’s the kind of thing I’d remember,” Jacobs said.

“I’m not sure why I would sit on that. The first thing I would’ve done was call Roger Ailes,” he added, referring to the Fox News president.

The subpoena of Rosen’s records serves as another wrinkle in a developing case that has earned the Justice Department and Attorney General Eric Holder intense scrutiny. Last week, President Barack Obama asked Holder to review the department’s guidelines for investigations that involve journalists.

For years, Justice Department guidelines have the media organisation be notified of any action regarding a subpoena involving one of its reporters.

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