Lachlan Murdoch Threatens to Sue Aussie News Site for Jan. 6 Allegations

Murdoch, CEO of Fox Corporation, says an article suggesting that the Murdochs held responsibility for the January 6 attack was defamatory

Lachlan Murdoch, co-chairman of News Corp and executive chairman and CEO of Fox Corporation, has threatened legal action against Australian news site Crikey for a recent article which suggested that he and his dad, Rupert Murdoch—CEO of Fox Corp—held some responsibility for the January 6 riots in the U.S. Capitol, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

The Crikey article was published June 29 but taken down the next day following the lawsuit threat. It then reappeared on the site with a note reading, “We have decided to republish the article… in order to clarify recent media reports about the legal threat.”

Murdoch wants an apology for the assertions made in the article, claiming it defamed him. The Crikey item must have hit the media scion where it hurts: Lachlan Murdoch is personally not quite a supporter of Trump and media reports have found him expressing his disapproval of the January 6 riots. News Corp papers the New York Post and the Wall Street Journal both published editorials that were highly critical of Trump’s behavior on January 6, reports the Herald.

Crikey, however, is standing its ground.

Crikey and its publisher Private Media are sick of being intimidated by Lachlan Murdoch,” editor in chief Peter Fray said, according to the Herald.

It’s not the first time they’ve been pushed around by Lachlan Murdoch. For a high-ranking executive, he seems to be exquisitely sensitive about the way he and his family are portrayed in the media. In April of last year, Murdoch demanded and received an apology from Crikey over an article concerning his dynasty. In 2020, Crikey also offered its regrets for an article Murdoch didn’t like, this time for comparing him to a mobster.

Titled “Trumped is a confirmed unhinged traitor. And Murdoch is his unindicted co-conspirator,” and written by political editor Bernard Keane, the article alleged that Trump had “the support of the world’s most powerful media company [referring to Fox News and its parent company, Fox Corp], which continues—even in the face of mountains of evidence of Trump’s treachery and crimes—to peddle the lie of the stolen election and play down the insurrection Trump created.”

Comparing Jan. 6 to a previous shameful episode in U.S. history, the article goes on to state, “Nixon was famously the ‘unindicted co-conspirator’ in Watergate. The Murdochs and their slew of poisonous Fox News commentators are the unindicted co-conspirators of this continuing crisis.”

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