Conspiracy to make a false statement to a federal agent? A false statement made to a federal agent, made knowingly and willfully, might violate 18 U.S.C. § 1001. A person violating this statute can be fined and/or imprisoned not more than 5 years. I'll let prosecutors or criminal defense attorneys speculate regarding whether a conspiracy to make a false statement charge could be made or whether Mr. Ailes would beat the rap.
Here's the news
After the publishing powerhouse Judith Regan was fired by HarperCollins in 2006, she claimed that a senior executive at its parent company, News Corporation, had encouraged her to lie to federal investigators two years before.
affidavits filed in a separate lawsuit reveal the identity of the previously unnamed executive: Roger E. Ailes, chairman of Fox News.
The investigators had been vetting Bernard B. Kerik, the former New York City police commissioner who had been nominated to become secretary of Homeland Security and who had had an affair with Ms. Regan.
The goal of the News Corporation executive, according to Ms. Regan, was to keep the affair quiet and protect the then-nascent presidential aspirations of former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, Mr. Kerik’s mentor and supporter.
What is more, the documents say that Ms. Regan taped the telephone call from Mr. Ailes in which Mr. Ailes discusses her relationship with Mr. Kerik.
It is unclear whether the existence of the tape played a role in News Corporation’s decision to move quickly to settle Ms. Regan’s lawsuit, paying her $10.75 million in a confidential settlement reached two months after she filed it in 2007.
The information is in a complaint and affidavit filed by Ms. Regan's former lawyers. She fired them on the eve of settlement. The former lawyers allege that she did so to avoid paying them their attorneys fees.
“In fact,” the complaint said, “a senior executive in the News Corporation organization told Regan that he believed she had information about Kerik that, if disclosed, would harm Giuliani’s presidential campaign. This executive advised Regan to lie to, and to withhold information from, investigators concerning Kerik.”
Mr. Redniss, in his affidavit, referred to “a recorded telephone call between Roger Ailes, the chairman of Fox News (a News Corp. company) and Regan, in which Mr. Ailes discussed with Regan her responses to questions regarding her personal relationship with Bernard Kerik.”
Certainly interesting allegations and the affidavit is sworn testimony and subject to the laws of perjury. I wonder if the DOJ is interested in this?