The FBI has recently conducted a search of the home of Tampa City Council member Lynn Hurtak and her husband, Tim Burke’s home. The search is linked to an ongoing criminal investigation into hacking and other potential violations of federal law associated with Fox News. Such federal violations include unauthorized access, communication interception, conspiracy, and other related crimes.
Though neither Hurtak nor Burke has been explicitly named in the investigation, they have spoken out to confirm the FBI targeted their home. According to the Tampa Bay Times, Hurtak and Burke have indicated that the investigation is related only to Burke. Representatives from Fox News have confirmed they are one of the potential victims-witnesses of the alleged criminal conduct.
The Tampa Bay Times has revealed a letter from Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Trezevant to Fox News, asking the organization to preserve any information relevant to the criminal investigation for a period of 90 days. The letter goes on to note that Fox is not accused of any wrongdoing and that the investigation primarily targets “other subjects.”
Burke, who is now the owner of a media business, has declined comment. He previously worked for The Daily Beast, Gizmodo, and Gawker, where in 2013, he famously debunked a story about the then college football star Manti T’eo’s girlfriend, who did not actually exist. His role in setting the record straight earned him an appearance in a 2022 Netflix documentary.
Hurtak is fresh off an election success, where she was the underdog against Janet Cruz, who is connected to Tampa’s Mayor Jane Castor. Hurtak’s previous tenure on the Tampa City Council saw her become an outspoken critic of the Mayor.
The Tampa Bay Times is now suing for access to the search warrant used by the FBI and is citing the public interest in the case due to Hurtak’s status at City Hall and her connection to the well-known journalist Burke.