News Site Says It's Being 'Intimidated' by Murdoch Son

'Crikey' says Lachlan Murdoch has threatened legal action over Jan. 6 article
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2022 1:59 PM CDT
Report: Murdoch Son Threatens Legal Action Over Jan. 6 Article
In this 2014 photo, News Corp. Exeuctive Chairman Rupert Murdoch, center, and his sons, Lachlan, left, and James Murdoch attend the 2014 Television Academy Hall of Fame.   (Photo by Dan Steinberg/Invision/AP Images, File)

(Newser) – Fox Corporation CEO Lachlan Murdoch is more litigious than his father, Rupert Murdoch, and an Australian news site is his latest target, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. Sources tell the Herald that Murdoch has been threatening Crikey with legal action over a June article that accused the Murdochs of playing a role in the Capitol attack with its coverage of Donald Trump. Richard Nixon "was famously the 'unindicted co-conspirator' in Watergate," political editor Bernard Keane wrote in the June 29 article. "The Murdochs and their slew of poisonous Fox News commentators are the unindicted co-conspirators of this continuing crisis."

Murdoch has sent multiple legal letters to Crikey since the article was published, demanding an apology for the allegedly defamatory claims, according to the Herald's sources. Crikey tweeted Monday that the article had been taken down in response to a legal threat from Murdoch—but it is now being republished "in order to clarify recent media reports about a legal threat." Crikey and publisher Private Media "are sick of being intimidated by Lachlan Murdoch," editor-in-chief Peter Fray said.

Murdoch is also co-chairman of News Corp, owner of the Wall Street Journal and the New York Post, both of which have published recent anti-Trump editorials. Rupert Murdoch has long been rumored to have turned against Trump and sources tell Oliver Darcy at CNN that Lachlan Murdoch has also "freely criticized" the former president in private. Darcy notes that while Fox has been focusing more on other conservative figures in recent months, the network's personalities were strongly supportive of Trump after the Mar-a-Lago search, suggesting that when Trump is at the center of the news cycle, Fox's "default position will be to air supportive coverage of him" to avoid alienating its audience. (Read more Lachlan Murdoch stories.)

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