U.S. prosecutors are checking to see if News Corp violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. They have have written to request info on alleged bribes paid by its employees to UK police, Bloomberg reported. The inquiry comes on the heels of a Justice Department and FBI probe investigating claims that victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks had their phones hacked by News Corp employees. The request for information in the bribery case doesn’t carry the same legal force as a grand jury subpoena, which would compel a response under law. News Corp is the target of three UK police investigations and a Parliamentary probe on phone hacking by reporters at the News of the World. The company shut down the newspaper and abandoned BSkyB takeover plans after allegations that its reporters deleted voice mails from a murdered schoolgirl’s phone.
In London meanwhile, Scotland Yard said it won’t force reporters at The Guardian to reveal their sources on the bribery and phone hacking cases after all. They had sought the names under the UK’s Official Secrets Act, normally used to prosecute spies. “This decision does not mean that the investigation has been concluded,” the police said in a statement. The department said their probe “has always been about whether a police officer has leaked information and gathering any evidence that proves or disproves that.” The Daily Telegraph and Sky News have reported that a detective’s arrest was linked to information given to The Guardian newspaper. A court hearing was scheduled for Sept. 23.
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