U.S. prosecutors sent subpoena to MSNBC reporter in hacking investigation

    Date05 Jun 2002
    CategoryGovernment
    2841
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    Without required approval, U.S. prosecutors sent a subpoena to MSNBC demanding a reporter's notes, e-mails and other information as part of an investigation into a nomadic young hacker who acknowledged breaking into computers at The New York Times earlier this year.. . . Without required approval, U.S. prosecutors sent a subpoena to MSNBC demanding a reporter's notes, e-mails and other information as part of an investigation into a nomadic young hacker who acknowledged breaking into computers at The New York Times earlier this year.

    The subpoena, which was withdrawn weeks later, also demanded any similar material from MSNBC involving another journalist who contacted the Times on behalf of the newspaper hacker after the break-in, then wrote about it for an online publication.

    Under guidelines from the Justice Department, Attorney General John Ashcroft or his deputy must personally approve any subpoenas sent to journalists, and Barbara Comstock, director of the Office of Public Affairs, must review such requests. But senior Justice officials on Ashcroft's staff at headquarters said they were unfamiliar with the MSNBC subpoena, and Ms. Comstock said she did not review it, officials said.

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