Former Deadspin Editor Charged in 2022 Fox News Leak That Revealed Tucker Carlson’s Off-Air Comments

Tim Burke faces 14 federal charges related to the alleged hack

Tim Burke
Tim Burke (Credit: YouTube)

The FBI charged Tampa media consultant Tim Burke on Thursday with 14 federal crimes related to alleged computer hacks at Fox News on Oct. 6, 2022. Burke’s lawyers argue that he did not violate any laws and was simply doing “good investigative journalism.”

The footage, which was made public by Vice Media and Media Matters for America, included moments such as Tucker Carlson calling a lawyer for Dominion Voting Systems “a slimy little motherf–ker” ahead of the network’s $787.5 million settlement.

Burke, a former Deadspin and Daily Beast staffer, was charged on Thursday with one count of conspiracy; six counts of accessing a protected computer without authorization; and seven counts of intercepting or disclosing wire, oral or electronic communications, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Burke and an unnamed person are accused of using “compromised credentials” to access and download protected commercial broadcast video streams. Burke, through his company Burke Communications, produces videos for media clients like HBO and ESPN.

His wife Lynn Hurtak, who is a a Tampa City Council member, said in a statement, “I am confident in my husband’s innocence, and I support him completely.”

FBI agents raided Burke’s home in Seminole Heights last May, where they seized several electronic devices and computers.

Burke’s lawyers, Michael Maddux and Mark Rasch, argue that Burke’s actions did not violate any laws.

“It’s not hacking, it’s just good investigative journalism,” Maddux told the Tampa Bay Times on Thursday. “We obviously emphatically deny these charges and we’re looking forward to the opportunity to defend him and exonerate him.”

Rasch told the Washington Post last year that Burke “is a master at finding links to stuff publicly posted on the internet. If a video is posted, public, unencrypted, and unprotected, then there’s simply no crime committed when a journalist like Tim finds it, reviews it, and accurately reports on it, even where, and maybe especially where, the subjects wish it was suppressed.”


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