News Corp held its annual journalism awards on Friday night with its broadsheet The Australian proving to be the biggest winner.
Oz journalist Paul Maley won the top prize, the Sir Keith Murdoch Award for journalist of the year, for his work exposing Islamic State’s infiltration into Australia.
However, both Maley and cartoonist Bill Leak revealed on the night that they had been threatened for their coverage of Islamic State. Although exact details of the threats were vague, Leak said that NSW police were now involved and he thanked them and News Corp security for their efforts.
News’ has taken an aggressive stance with IS and terrorism in both its broadsheet and tabloid papers, with Leak’s cartoons particularly derisive of current middle eastern politics.
Maley said during his acceptance speech: “Bill Leak has also been the subject of some pretty nasty threats, and one point I’d make about all that is that it has been quite rugged, but at all times all of us have had the staunch backing of the company, security people, but also News Limited.
“It’s been a very tough year. There have been threats, but I think we’re giving them a lot more trouble than they’re giving us,” he said.