Lawsuit: Trump OK'd Fox's Unfounded Murder Story

It's been suggested that Rich was the source of leaked DNC emails published on WikiLeaks two weeks after his death.

"Zimmerman and Butowsky, it is claimed, sought to advance the political agenda of the Trump administration by asking Wheeler to confirm that "Rich was responsible for the leak of DNC emails to WikiLeaks", and "[he] was murdered by a Democrat operative because he leaked the emails to WikiLeaks".

Wheeler alleges that Fox created this misinformation in favor of Trump to take the attention away from the ongoing Russian Federation investigation, which is speculated to have had a role in Trump's winning the presidency.

Butowsky offered to pay for Wheeler to investigate the death, and a month before the story ran the pair met at the White House with then-press secretary Sean Spicer to brief him on the developments they were supposedly uncovering. Butowsky, told him the quotes appeared in the story because "that is the way the president wanted them in the article", Wheeler says.

"A couple minutes ago I got a note that we have the full attention of the White House on this and tomorrow, let's close this deal", Butowski said. The story was published under pressure from President Donald Trump, Wheeler claims.

The investigator, Rod Wheeler, filed a 33-page defamation lawsuit against the news network on Tuesday. Wheeler claims that every quotation included in his lawsuit "is from an email, text message, published news article and/or recorded or videotaped conversation".

Wheeler is a former Washington D.C. Police homicide detective and current private investigative consultant, crime analyst and Fox News contributor.

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Zimmerman's report was rejected by Rich's family as a conspiracy theory; Washington, D.C., police have said Rich's death was likely a botched robbery attempt.

"So Chris, I resent you trying to characterize me as an insensitive jerk", he said. "'I've never spoken to Trump in my life, ' he says". Days later, Fox News retracted it. "Chris, I went to this family because I thought I had heard something that would help these people, because they had said in newspapers".

As this is all happening, Wheeler and Butowsky meet with Sean Spicer at the White House to go over Butowsky's claims.

"A reporter making up quotes is a very serious allegation and I don't think it matches the sort of reporter she was in Hawaii", Moore said.

According to the lawsuit, Malia Zimmerman of #Fox News made up two quotes which credited Wheeler in an article published on May 16.

When the story was published in May, it included a number of quotes from Wheeler - some of which Zimmerman fabricated to make it sound as though her and Butowski's alleged Federal Bureau of Investigation source was Wheeler's. Butowsky now claims he was joking about Trump reviewing the drafts, and Spicer told NPR he met Butowsky as a favor. He says he got involved after being contacted by a well connected Republican donor and trump supporter.

Butowsky did not immediately comment to CNBC for this article. The lawsuit alleges these quotes were made up to the pleasure of the president, something the White House called "completely untrue" Monday.

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