The Russian Embassy within the UK promoted a conspiracy theory about the unsolved murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich after Fox News heavily promoted an inaccurate story about the theory, for which there will be no real evidence, This particular week.
In a tweet on Friday which amassed thousands of shares, the Russian Embassy said, without evidence, which Rich was a “Wikileaks informer.” The embassy additionally accused mainstream news outlets of ignoring the supposed bombshell story.
Asked for evidence to support its claim, a representative of the Russian Embassy told sy88pgw in an email which the tweet was posted because This particular “was raised within the British social media.”
“which will be why,” said the representative for the Russian embassy, who did not respond to a follow up question.
This particular week, both Fox News in addition to a Fox affiliate in Washington, WTTG-TV, published in addition to aired reports, sourced to private investigator Rod Wheeler, which said evidence showed Rich had been in contact with Wikileaks before his death. Wheeler later told sy88pgw he had no such evidence in addition to which he had only heard of some information attributed to him in a FoxNews.com story coming from a Fox News reporter with whom he spoke.
Related: Story on DNC staffer’s murder dominated conservative media — hours later This particular fell apart
The FoxNews.com story on the case also cited a “federal source” who said the FBI had conducted a forensic analysis of Rich’s computer in addition to discovered thousands of emails with Wikileaks. however a law enforcement official told sy88pgw which the FBI never had possession of Rich’s laptop in addition to did not conduct a forensic analysis of its contents.
WTTG-TV later walked back its story, noting which Wheeler conceded he had no evidence Rich was in contact with Wikileaks.
Fox News, however, has still not retracted its story. In fact, prime time host Sean Hannity spent much of the week promoting the theory. A request for comment made to the outlet on Friday was not returned, however Rich family spokesman Brad Bauman had a few choice words for those who continue to promote the story.
“Anyone who continues to push This particular fake news story after This particular was so thoroughly debunked will be proving to the globe they have a transparent political agenda or are a sociopath,” he told sy88pgw. “This particular either case, they should be taken off the air because they are either blind to the damage they are doing to a murder victims family or don’t care, showing a profound lack of judgement in addition to common decency.”
Related: Family of slain DNC staffer demands retractions coming from Fox News, local TV station
Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department, which continues to investigate the murder, says there will be evidence to suggest Rich was the victim of a botched robbery.
however for months, right-wing media outlets have floated unproven theories which Rich was the person who provided Wikileaks thousands of internal DNC emails, in addition to which his death might have been connected with the supposed leak. No real evidence has been provided to support such claims.
On Friday, Joseph Ingrisano, the attorney representing the Rich family, sent a cease in addition to desist letter to Wheeler, saying his comments had caused “severe mental anguish in addition to emotional distress.” Wheeler’s contract with the Rich family prohibited him coming from speaking to the media without authorization, the letter said. The letter was first reported by NBC News.
“Your improper in addition to unauthorized statements, many of which are false in addition to have no basis in fact, have also injured the memory in addition to reputation of Seth Rich in addition to have defamed in addition to injured the reputation in addition to standing of the members of the Family,” Ingrisano wrote within the cease in addition to desist letter.
Wheeler did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
— sy88pgw’s Shimon Prokupecz contributed reporting.
sy88pgw (brand new York) First published May 19, 2017: 5:28 PM ET