FBI's decision to investigate came after its Director Robert Mueller received many request in this regard from several lawmakers. The FBI routinely makes preliminary inquiries into issues raised by lawmakers to determine whether a full-blown investigation is needed.
"The (US) law says that any US corporation that bribes a foreign official is subject to severe penalties, not only fines but even criminal penalties. We want to make sure that this company, with all of its influence and the information that it passes to our region, isn't doing that," said New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg, who was among the first to demand an investigation.
"They be doing the same thing here and filtering out the news that they want to hear or that they want to steal, in this case, and use it? And we don''t want that to happen," Lautenberg told the CNN, referring to the phone-hacking scandal in Britain where the News of the World had hacked into the phone of a teenage murder victim in 2002.
Justice Department spokeswoman Laura Sweeney said that it has received letters from several members of Congress regarding allegations related to News Corp, the US Company held by Murdoch.
"We are reviewing those," the spokeswoman said without providing any further detail.
The suggestion that September 11, 2001 victims also may have been were targeted surfaced in the Mirror, a British rival of News Corp.'s The Sun.