When a major media outlet has an exclusive interview for potentially explosive story about a major political figure, you don’t usually find that news operation sitting on it. So what’s up with this revelation about NBC News?
As TPNN reported on Wednesday, Hillary Clinton may have suffered a devastating blow in the form of a Fox News report about a notorious computer hacker who claims to have broken into Clinton’s unsecured, home-brew email server while she was secretary of state.
But interviews with hacker Marcel Lehel Lazar — who goes by the online alias “Guccifer” — also raise the question of whether Fox News rival NBC had virtually the same information more than a month ago, and deliberately didn’t air it … when it could have played a role in the outcome of some Democrat primary contests between Clinton and rival Bernie Sanders.
There’s no question that Guccifer’s statements could be damaging to Clinton — politically and legally. Besides bragging about how easily he was able to break into the then-secretary of state’s unsecured, non-government server, he also claimed it had been hacked by intruders from all over the world. That raises the likelihood that foreign intelligence services were privy to some of the United States’ most secret information — which is a focus of the FBI’s investigation of Clinton’s email practices.
Lazar was extradited from Romania to an Alexandria, Virginia, prison in March to face charges including wire fraud, cyberstalking, identify theft and obstruction of justice. It is alleged that he accessed and made public emails that were sent to Clinton from her longtime confidant Sidney Blumenthal.
Fox News’ Catherine Herridge broke the story after an exclusive interview with Guccifer, which was conducted after his extradition to the United States.
As LawNewz.com reported on Wednesday, immediately after the Fox story broke, NBC News announced it had its own “exclusive” with the Romanian hacker that would be aired on Sunday. The media outlet even issued a news release about the interview — which was conducted by reporter Cynthia McFadden in a Bucharest prison — where Guccifer admitted to hacking into Clinton’s private email account.
Part of the transcript from that interview is as follows, and closely mimics that of Fox News’ communications with Lazar.
CYNTHIA McFADDEN: When Hillary Clinton says that her server is absolutely safe – you’re laughing.
MARCEL LEHEL LAZAR (GUCCIFER): That’s a lie.
McFADDEN: That’s a lie?
McFADDEN: It’s not safe.
GUCCIFER: It’s not safe at all.
Lazar admits to the crime of breaking into Clinton’s email which reportedly contained over 2,000 classified documents, including at least 22 that were deemed “top secret.”
While Clinton has denied that her private email was hacked — and Guccifer’s claims have yet to verified — important questions remain.
If NBC conducted the initial interview in the Bucharest prison before or around Guccifer’s extradition date of March 31, 2016, why did the network keep the interview under wraps long enough to allow rival Fox News to break the story over a month later? And did the former first lady or her surrogates play a role in NBC’s sitting on the news until it was exposed by Fox?
NBC is the network that paid Chelsea Clinton $600,000 a year from 2011 to 2014 for work almost nobody can remember. What else has the Peacock Network been doing for the Clinton family?
NBC declined to comment for LawNewz post.