Apr 13, 2012 51 Comments ›› Pat Dollard
The Cutline: The law firm Epstein Becker & Green P.C. has sent a legal threat on behalf of Fox News to Gawker Media publisher Nick Denton over his site’s ongoing “Fox Mole” story involving recently fired Fox News employee Joe Muto.
Gawker published the full letter, which states, “Be advised that Muto’s admissions are admissions of likely criminal and civil wrongdoing on both his and Gawker’s part, which will be the subject of further extensive investigation. Fox News will pursue its rights and remedies in the appropriate legal forums.”
The letter goes on to say, “Gawker should immediately stop publishing information and videos that have been unlawfully obtained by or from Joe Muto, and return them to Fox News.”
In response, Gawker not only published the letter but has posted a photo of “O’Reilly Factor” host Bill O’Reilly standing with a group of friends, including a topless woman.
Muto was fired less than 24 hours after publishing his first undercover dispatch on Gawker’s site. “Joe Muto is fired effective April 12,” a Fox News spokeswoman told Yahoo News on Wednesday. “Once the network determined that Mr. Muto was the main culprit in less than 24 hours, he was suspended late today while we pursued concurrent avenues. We are continuing to explore legal recourse against Mr. Muto and possibly others.”