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February 14, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

As the Scotland Yard investigation began looking into the possibility that Rupert Murdoch’s Sun newspaper attempted to bribe and otherwise corrupt public officials in order to obtain information for exposés, personnel at the newspaper have begun to fight back. Referring to the arrest of five top journalists at the paper — Britain’s largest — over the weekend, Associate Editor Trevor Kavanagh complained in an op-ed piece in the tabloid that police are are engaging in a “witch hunt” that has become the “biggest police operation in British criminal history.” Meanwhile, Reuters has reported that the FBI is also looking into the matter, inasmuch as News Corp, which owns the Sun, is a U.S. based company and could be charged with violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act if reporters at the Sun are convicted of bribery. The FCC could also enter the picture, since News Corp is also the owner of 27 broadcast television stations in the U.S. Meanwhile, Murdoch reportedly is flying back to the U.K. to meet with journalists at his newspapers who reportedly are angry that he gave an internal Management and Standards committee a free hand to investigate possible wrongdoing and turn over evidence of what it learned to police. The unit, which first began investigating charges of phone hacking by reporters at the now-defunct News of the World, has expanded its remit as the allegations of bribery have become public. Andrew Neil, the former editor of the Sunday Times, another Murdoch newspaper in the U.K., told Reuters that Sun journalists will not welcome Murdoch’s visit. “They’re sullen. They’re resentful. They feel betrayed,” Neil said.