Last week, the NY Times broke the story that Roger Ailes had urged various colleagues to lie to Federal investigators; (David Corn explains the background to this here).


“It was an incendiary allegation — and a mystery of great intrigue in the media world: 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 two years earlier to federal investigators who were vetting Bernard B. Kerik for the job of homeland security secretary . . .

Now, court documents filed in a lawsuit make clear whom Ms. Regan was accusing of urging her to lie: Roger E. Ailes, the powerful chairman of Fox News and a longtime friend of Mr. Giuliani. What is more, the documents say that Ms. Regan taped the telephone call from Mr. Ailes in which Mr. Ailes discussed her relationship with Mr. Kerik.”

Here’s what I learned recently: Someone I spoke with claimed that Ailes was scheduled to speak at their event in March, but canceled. It appears that Roger’s people, ostensibly using a clause in his contract, said he “cannot appear for legal reasons.”

I asked “What, precisely, does that mean?”

The response: “Roger Ailes will be indicted — probably this week, maybe even Monday.”

You read it here first . . .

Category: Financial Press, Legal

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

57 Responses to “Roger Ailes to be Indicted”

  1. Moss says:

    Ailes is one of the great puppeteers who also happens to own the theater. It would be outstanding if he is finally vetted in a fair and balanced courtroom.

  2. swag says:

    Go Team Awesome. Beat Team Douchebag.

  3. [...] Barry Rhitoltz believes Ailes may be indicted as early as this week. [...]

  4. polizeros says:

    Be still my heart

  5. [...] of Fox News, will be indicted this week for urging colleagues to lie to federal investigators.Ritholtz says Ailes has cancelled an appearance in March because “Roger Ailes will be indicted — [...]

  6. davefromcarolina says:

    Indicted is not the same as convicted. Given the recent track record of sending millionaires to jail, I’d say a healthy measure of skepticism is justified.

  7. [...] financial blogger and frequent cable news guest Barry Ritholtz has this: Here’s what I learned recently: Someone I spoke with claimed that Ailes was scheduled to [...]

  8. RandyClayton says:

    The hysterical backlash from Fox News will set a new standard. Brace yourselves. Of course it will be spun as the Obama Administration’s attempt to shut down the open and free press.

    If there is a recording he is toast. How stupid of Ailes to urged someone to lie to the feds.

  9. franklin411 says:

    This would just be so sweet, given Fox News’ war on women and minorities through (doctored) tape recordings!

  10. [...] After years of telling his broadcasters to lie on the air to further the interests of the Republican Party, it looks like Fox News President Roger Ailes may be getting into some serious legal trouble for telling one of his employees to lie to federal investigators to protect his GOP pal Rudy Giuliani. Rumor has it that Ailes will be indicted tomorrow. [...]

  11. Unsympathetic says:

    I volunteer at my local prison ministry. I look forward to working with him.

  12. [...] led to this today from reporter Barry Ritholtz: Here’s what I learned recently: Someone I spoke with claimed [...]

  13. beaufou says:

    Caution Ailes, you are about to enter the no spin zone.

  14. Pantmaker says:

    I always wondered if Ailes along with his Fox news would eventually crash and burn much like many of the more infamous “Super-Christian” TV ministers and their networks have done….Jimmy Swaggert, Robert Tilton, Jim Bakker, Ted Haggard, George “rent boy” Rekers, Eddie Long etc. It’s all the same crap. Sociopaths making money on the backs of the gullible.

  15. Quixotic77 says:

    My guess – only a guess – is that Barry Ritholtz is judgment-proof, i.e., poor, so he doesn’t care about authoring recklessly false statements leading to a defamation suit. But that might not apply to any legal entity associated with this blog, which published the likely defamatory statements. But maybe the reasoning here is that even if the statements are defamatory, thus theoretically forming the basis for liability on the part of Barry Ritholtz and this blog, Alies will not sue, because he has bigger fish to fry and no one really cares what Ritholtz says. Which is likely correct.

    But it would be fun if Alies sued anyway, just to remind those on the innertubes that you cannot always just say anything you feel like saying.

  16. KevinM says:

    Clearly all part of a vast left wing conspiracy against truth justice and the American way. This man is as guiltless and nonpartisan as Reid himself. Haven’t we learned the lesson from the shooting Sarah Palin incited? We need a special joint committee and a continuing resolution to campaign reform this.

  17. Quixotic77, you should reread what I wrote:

    1) How do you know this is false? It is about an event in the future.
    (Thus, you are revealed as a person who does not only does not understand law, but has difficulty analyzing complex situations).

    2) I am accurately reporting what a person I spent many hours with told me about their upcoming event, Ailes’ cancellation, and what Aile’s folks told them. This is a reputable gentlemen who (IMO) would not make “recklessly false statements.”

    3) No one is truly judgement proof, but I have taken the appropriate legal steps to protect my assets from litigation, nuisance suits, etc.

    As to your slander of me (heh heh) look for the letter from my lawyers regarding your “recklessly false statement;” namely, I am poor. Your making the false claim that someone in the finance profession is poor is deemed in NYS slander per se. Since the lawyers are already on retainer, I am sure this will be full of shits & giggles for everyone!

  18. romerjt says:

    Roger Ailes encouraged someone to lie, gee . . he pays them to lie . . . his respect for truth can be seen in two words – Glen Beck

  19. wunsacon says:

    Quixotic86 Says: “Sorry, BR. Hope I wasn’t out of line with that crack about your being poor. … Hold on a minute. My shoe phone is ringing.”

  20. Arequipa01 says:

    Here is my question, What in God’s Name was Roger Ailes thinking when he took on Judith Regan?

    Here’s quote from that Vanity Fair smear piece (I mean story) about her:

    “But in some ways being screamed at by Regan was considerably less unsettling than being her chum. “She’s a raunchy personality, and when she feels comfortable and wants to bond, her bizarre way of doing it is to get crude,” says one former editor. “Maybe she enjoys making you uncomfortable? Or maybe it’s her weird way of bonding with other women?” At one point Regan told this particular editor, “I’m on so many hormones I could hump the doorknob.” “Or,” said the editor, “she’d say something like, ‘My clit is this big’—and hold out her fingers.””

    Judith is a lot like Graunya O’Malley with all the brio and real danger that Sophia Loren used to portray- as in pretended to have. JR is scorched earth incarnate. Irish and Sicilian, what a lovely blend! Good luck, Chubbster- you’re going to need it.

  21. [...] Breaking at Chez Barry: Roger Ailes to be indicted.  (TBP) [...]

  22. [...] looks like Mr. Ailes will be facing a federal indictment very soon and is clearing his calendar in response. Tags : Fox [...]

  23. BR,

    if, ever, in need of additional resources for a “1st Amendment”-Defense Fund, just, say the Word..

    I’m sure I wouldn’t be alone in kicking in a few Kwacha..

  24. Julia Chestnut says:

    Heaven hath no rage like love to hatred turned;
    Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

    He he. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

  25. [...] Ailes to be Indicted. Why is this not big news? Last week, the NY Times broke the story that Roger Ailes had urged various colleagues to lie to Fede… February 27th, 2011 | Category: [...]

  26. [...] Here’s financial commentator Barry Ritholtz: [...]

  27. [...] The Big Picture has some background information regarding the story, that one from Barry Ritholtz [...]

  28. peachin says:

    It is interesting to see the comments and “which side of the isle they are coming from” Truth has no side of the isle… we will find out that Indictment will lead to some form of professed guilt (a deal if you will) which is a way of being guilty without acknowledgement – Through Society’s Back door available to the rich and powerful. Unless Ailes will be used as a “Martha Stewart” type example. In retrospect, Martha Stewart did more damage to the legal system than the legal system did to Martha!

    I would hope this will begin a turmoil in the news business, the right wing news business and the Republican party that would cause them to run out of toilet paper.

  29. woodhenge says:

    Ailes is having a bad 2011 so far.

    Esquires recent article:

  30. dead hobo says:

    Barry Ritholtz Says:
    February 27th, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    As to your slander of me (heh heh) look for the letter from my lawyers regarding your “recklessly false statement;” namely, I am poor. Your making the false claim that someone in the finance profession is poor is deemed in NYS slander per se. Since the lawyers are already on retainer, I am sure this will be full of shits & giggles for everyone!

    Just asking since you are a lawyer and an expert on this by definition and I am only curious … Since this is a moderated blog, and since you or your agent approved the post by allowing it to post and remain posted, aren’t you slandering yourself?


    BR: Its not a moderated blog — but due to anti-spam filters, some posts seem to come up for moderation more than others.

  31. dead hobo says:

    Also, just asking, are you inviting the widest possible variety of comments by posting the disclaimer at the top of the comments section, followed by moderation?

  32. Marc P says:

    If he did this, then the Justice Dept. is correct to investigate and indict. However…

    What does it say about the state of our national affairs that Justice is up in arms about this, but it seems to ignore widespread misrepresentations to the courts in foreclosures, or widespread lies to investors by the TBTF banks?

    Is the difference that the lies were to Justice itself? Then this appears to be about Justice Dept. ego, not judicial justice.

    What happened to the principle that laws apply equally to everyone?

  33. First Amendment Attorney says:


    Roger Ailes is most definitely a public figure — president of Fox News Channel and chairman of the Fox Television Stations Group — as such, the standards for defamation and/or slander are much higher and harder to prove.

    For Ailes to prevail in a Slander suit, he would have to show that Ritholtz published this knowing it was false, or with Malice — reckless disregard as to the truth. That does not seem to be the case here.

    Not only that, but then imagine any future Slander/Libel litigation against Fox News — would the entire network then risk a lowered standard — Could potential plaintiffs use the lowered “Ailes Slander Standard” versus Fox? It would be embarrassing, to say the least, for Fox News to defend cases using the same basis as Chairman.

  34. [...] Barry Ritholtz: Someone I spoke with claimed that Ailes was scheduled to speak at their event in March, but [...]

  35. [...] Roger Ailes to be Indicted. [...]

  36. farmera1 says:

    Q, is that you Rodger????? Roger??? You there.

  37. mbelardes says:

    hahahaha. That Quixotic defamation claim is pretty funny.

    Truth is the ultimate defense in defamation and if all signs point to Indictment…

    Criminal act committed. Criminal act investigated. News reports being published. Cancellations of events for legal reasons.

    The inferrence that someone might be indicted is not defamation. Been awhile since torts but pretty sure BR would have to know or should have known his statement to be false and have published the statement maliciously. Something along those lines.

    A better legal question is if you can get dinged on a securities law violation. You are protected by Mosaic Theory since you are piecing together bits of info from public and private sources, none of which are material. I’d run that one by the lawyers though.

  38. mbelardes says:

    Hmm … so I’m not sure if I should pickup the March 17 or March 16 puts. GS got lit for 20% over that kid with just a few emails in a civil case. I figure a criminal indictment of the Chairman with actual audio recordings of the crime has to be good for at least a 30 or 40% hit. Probably going with the 16s. This stock was at $14 six weeks ago.

  39. doug86 says:

    6pm EST and still HuffPo doesn’t have this on their Front Page, so it can’t be true…

  40. [...] of buzz about this story from Barry Ritholtz: “Here’s what I learned recently: Someone I spoke with claimed that Ailes was scheduled to [...]

  41. [...] Here’s financial commentator Barry Ritholtz: [...]

  42. woodhenge says:

    best quote about Ailes from your David Corn linked article: Ailes clearly knows that his whole fair-and-balanced shtick is a clever (and profitable) gimmick designed to make conservative shut-ins believe they are the real mainstream.

    I love that

  43. Esquire says:

    I second what First Amendment Attorney wrote — I am a litigator who represents authors, publishers, and media in my practice. Libel and Slander litigation come up all the time.

    Its hard to see how a major public figure like Ailes could possibly sue on this post.

    If he does, then contact me on it BR — I’ll represent you for free on any litigation arising from this. The ensuing publicity would be great for my practice, and probably very good for your blog.

    Imagine the headlines: Fox News Chief sues blogger — it wold be admitting that blogs are now more important than the mainstream TV news.

  44. MattSEG says:

    I love that I saw this via a re-tweet from ‘Anonymous’!/ObZen_/status/42073049306107904
    Which was a link to reddit, which was a link to Ritholtz. My daily reading of twitter/reddit/ritholtz has come full circle.

  45. Moss says:

    ‘gimmick designed to make conservative shut-ins believe they are the real mainstream’.

    The real Americans… brainwashed by conservative propaganda tactics, unwilling to think for themselves.

  46. [...] Roger Ailes was caught on tape encouraging colleagues to lie to Federal Investigators.  Well, it seems that lying has finally caught up with one Republican operative.  Maybe people will wake up to the Faux News’ and their dirty tricks now.  Here’s [...]

  47. [...] Ailes to be Indicted (Big Picture) Your juicy rumor of the day: The Fox News chief may face charges for ordering an employee to lie [...]

  48. number2son says:

    Ah, it’s THAT Judith Regan, the one who got O.J. to confess (as if anyone was in doubt or even cared), only to have Fox pull the book and filmed interview with the double-murderer.

    And, per Wiki, she’s also quite the litigious gal:

    For those inclined to follow, this will be like wolves turning viciously on each other.

  49. [...] On Sunday morning, the economics analyst and TV commentator Barry Ritholtz dropped a bombshell on his blog: Roger Ailes, the powerful president of Fox News, will be indicted in connection with allegedly telling a News Corp. executive to lie to federal investigators, according to Ritholtz’s blog post. [...]

  50. Tarkus says:

    If this is true – why would anybody want Kerik (I think he was later convicted of a felony) as head of DHS so badly? What’s the point?

    An indictment would only be the start of a whole lotta questions.

  51. barrem01 says:

    While I certainly don’t think it’s slander, and I can understand why anyone would want to publish this story, when I read your “defense” against the slander charge in the comments above, I couldn’t help thinking this is just the kind of reporting that’s killing journalism. Yeah, you’re just reporting what you heard someone say, but that’s how crap from Drudge gets into the New York Times. Maybe I’m being too hard on you, Barry. This is a blog, and not the Times. But if you wan’t to report something, shouldn’t you at least get a second source?


    BR: In the NYT or WSJ yes; on a blog, no.

  52. DeDude says:

    Reporting what you heard about Fox is the ultimate justice. How often have Fox done that kind of sh!t to others?

  53. [...] knows what will happen but it sure would be interesting if the head of ABC’s sister network get indicted. I would like to hear the tape of Ailes telling Judith Regan to lie to federal [...]

  54. Arequipa01 says:

    @Ballon Juice/Jailhouse- that cost News Corp. US$10.75 million, so get out your checkbook.

  55. [...] an unnamed source, blogger and economic commentator Barry Ritholtz claimed in a post that Roger Ailes, chairman and CEO of Fox News, will be indicted “probably this week, maybe [...]

  56. [...] As I wrote last Sunday, I was chatting with someone who stated that Roger Ailes had canceled to be the keynote speaker at their conference. According to this person, Ailes’ people blamed it on an imminent indictment – ostensibly on felony charges of obstruction of justice. (Roger Ailes to be Indicted). [...]

  57. nimh says:

    Well that didn’t pan out.