Rupert Murdoch’s son Lachlan ends Australian defamation suit


Fox Corp. chief executive Lachlan Murdoch on Friday dropped his defamation lawsuit against Australian news website Crikey, citing the Fox News settlement of a U.S. court case where the network agreed to pay almost $800 million over its lies involving the 2020 U.S. presidential election.
Media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s son filed the Crikey suit last August a day after executives at Crikey’s publisher put their names to an ad in The New York Times inviting Lachlan Murdoch to sue to test the press freedom issue in court.
Murdoch’s lawsuit targeted the publisher, Private Media, its then-managing editor Peter Fray, who was also the website’s editor-in-chief, and Crikey’s political editor, Bernard Keane. Murdoch claimed he was defamed by Keane’s column about the U.S. congressional investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the Capitol building which Crikey published in June last year under the headlines: “Trump is a confirmed unhinged traitor. And Murdoch is his unindicted co-conspirator.”
Murdoch’s lawyer John Churchill said in a statement he had filed a notice of discontinuance in Federal Court on Friday.
“Crikey has tried to introduce thousands of pages of documents from a defamation case in another jurisdiction, which has now settled,” the statement said, referring to the Fox News settlement with Dominion Voting Systems that was announced Tuesday.