Sunday, 30 December 2012

PHONE HACKING SCANDAL - WHO WAS INVOLVED?

Phone hacking: The main players

Allegations of phone hacking at the News of the World thrust the newspaper's owners, News Corporation, its UK arm, News International, and its journalists directly into the spotlight. The Met Police have identified more than 4,000 possible victims. A separate Scotland Yard investigation is also looking into claims of inappropriate payments made to police. Here are the key players in the unfolding scandal.
Source: bbc
Rupert Murdoch - Chief Executive, News Corporation

The News of the World (NoW) was part of Rupert Murdoch's News International newspaper group - the UK arm of the media mogul's News Corporation global empire. During questioning by MPs, he said he was not aware of the extent of phone hacking at the NoW and he had "clearly" been misled by some of his staff. At the Leveson Inquiry into media standards, Mr Murdoch said there had been a "cover-up" of phone hacking at the News of the World that had been kept hidden from senior executives including him.
A committee of MPs said Rupert Murdoch was "not a fit person to exercise the stewardship of a major international company" and that he exhibited "wilful blindness" to what was going on in his media empire.
But the culture committee, reporting in May 2012, was split with Tory members refusing to endorse the report.

Source: tvtropes
"The Dirty Digger"; Rupert Murdoch

Rebekah Brooks - Former Chief Executive, News International
Charged with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

News International's former chief executive and former NoW editor.
Mrs Brooks and her husband, Charlie Brooks, were among six people charged - in May 2012 - with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
She faces three charges of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and a further three charges of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications.
Mrs Brooks has denied any wrongdoing.
Questioned by MPs in 2011, she said News International had acted "quickly and decisively" in dealing with the hacking scandal and that she had never sanctioned payments to the police.

Source: mediaweek
Brooks received a payoff of £10m compensation for loss of her job. 

Andy Coulson - NoW Editor 2003-2007
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications.

Andy Coulson, who was NoW editor between 2003 and 2007, resigned from his position following the convictions of ex-NoW royal editor Clive Goodman and private investigator Glenn Mulcaire for phone hacking.
He later became Prime Minister David Cameron's spokesman but quit in January 2011, saying hacking claims were distracting him from his job.
Mr Coulson was arrested in July 2011 over phone-hacking and corruption allegations and in July 2012 was charged on five counts of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications.
He is suing NoW after it stopped paying his legal fees in relation to the scandal.

Glenn Mulcaire - Private Investigator
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications

A private investigator employed by the NoW, Glenn Mulcaire, 41, was jailed in January 2007 for phone hacking. He admitted unlawfully intercepting voicemail messages received by three royal aides. He was also convicted of hacking the phones of a number of other public figures, including publicist Max Clifford and actress Elle Macpherson.
Rearrested on suspicion of conspiracy to hack voicemail messages and perverting the course of justice in December 2011, he faces four charges of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications.

Ian Edmondson - Ex-NoW News Editor
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications

The former NoW assistant editor was arrested in April 2011 and in July 2012 was charged with 12 counts of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications.
He is lodging a complaint with an employment tribunal against News International, alleging unfair dismissal.

Neville Thurlbeck - Ex-NoW Chief Reporter
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications.

Neville Thurlbeck, former chief reporter at the NoW, was not included as part of the original inquiry as police said there was no evidence linking him to the case.
He was arrested in April 2011 and in July 2012 was charged with eight counts of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications.
He is lodging a complaint with an employment tribunal against News International, alleging unfair dismissal.

James Weatherup - Ex-NoW Reporter
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications.

The former NoW reporter and news editor was arrested on 14 April 2011 and in July 2012 was charged with eight counts of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications.

Stuart Kutter - Former NoW Managing Director
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications


Stuart Kuttner served as the NoW's managing editor for 22 years before resigning in July 2009 to focus on "specialised projects", including the paper's Sarah's Law campaign.
In July 2012, Mr Kuttner was charged with three counts of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications. He was released on bail.

Greg Miskiw - Former NoW News Editor
Charged with conspiring to intercept communications


Greg Miskiw, 61, was arrested after visiting a police station by appointment.
In July 2012, Mr Miskiw was charged with 10 counts of conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications. He was released on bail.

James Murdoch - Deputy Chief Operating Officer, News Corporation

Rupert Murdoch's son, James, resigned as News International's chairman in February 2012 and from his role as chairman of UK broadcaster BSkyB in April 2012 but remains deputy chief operating officer of News Corp. He has said he was not, until recently, in the picture about the full extent of wrongdoing at the NoW. Announcing the closure of the Sunday tabloid, he said the allegations were "shocking and hugely regrettable".
He told MPs the firm had failed to live up to "the standards they aspired to". He was recalled to appear before MPs. He told the culture committee he had not seen an email which suggested hacking was more widespread at the paper than previously acknowledged.
The culture committee's report concluded Mr Murdoch was "consistent" in relation to the email, but had demonstrated "wilful ignorance" about what had been going on, which "clearly raises questions of competence" on his part.
The committee said he had shown an "astonishing lack of curiosity" for not reading emails sent to him in 2008. It said News Corporation showed "wilful blindness", for which James Murdoch should be prepared to take responsibility. But Tory committee member Louise Mensch said Conservative members were divided on the "degree of culpability of James Murdoch in particular".
Mr Murdoch also told the Leveson inquiry he never saw the email showing hacking was widespread. But it was his evidence about News Corp's bid for BSkyB that caused the most furore. Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt faced calls to resign after it was revealed his special adviser was in contact with News Corp during its bid for BSkyB.

Source: guardian

Les Hinton - Former Chief Executive, Dow Jones
Resigned

Les Hinton was chief executive of News Corp's financial news service Dow Jones, publisher of the Wall Street Journal, as well as executive chairman of News International. One of Rupert Murdoch's top executives, Mr Hinton had worked with him for more than five decades. Announcing he was quitting, he said he was "ignorant of what apparently happened" but felt it was proper to resign. Mr Murdoch said it brought him "great sadness".
The culture committee said in its report on phone-hacking in May 2012 that Les Hinton misled the Committee in 2009 in not telling the truth about payments to Clive Goodman and his role in authorising them, including the payment of his legal fee.
He also misled the committee about the extent of his knowledge of allegations that phone-hacking extended beyond Clive Goodman and Glenn Mulcaire to others at the News of the World, the report said.

Clive Goodman - Ex-NoW Royal Editor 
Jailed and rearrested

The former NoW royal editor was jailed for four months in 2007 for phone hacking. He admitted unlawfully intercepting hundreds of telephone voicemail messages received by three members of staff at Buckingham Palace. The investigation was sparked after Prince William became suspicious about a November 2005 NoW story about a knee injury. In July 2011, Goodman, 53, was again arrested, on suspicion of corruption. He was released on bail.

Tom Crone - Former NoW Legal Manager

Tom Crone told MPs he had informed James Murdoch as far back as 2008 of an email that implied hacking at the paper went beyond one rogue reporter - contrary to Mr Murdoch's earlier evidence. James Murdoch has said he stands by his original testimony to MPs.
The culture committee, reporting in May 2012, said Mr Crone and Colin Myler, former NoW editor, had misled the committee including about their knowledge of evidence that other NoW employees had been involved in phone-hacking and other wrongdoing.
After Rupert Murdoch told the Leveson Inquiry staff at the NoW kept him in the dark by covering up the phone-hacking scandal, Mr Crone accused Mr Murdoch of telling a "shameful lie".
In August 2012 Mr Crone was arrested in south-west London by police investigating phone hacking. He was held on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications contrary to Section 1 of the Criminal Law Act 1977.

Colin Myler - Former News of the World Editor

Former News of the World editor Colin Myler, now editor-in-chief of the New York Daily News, was criticised by a group of MPs examining phone hacking. The culture committee said he had misled the committee by answering questions falsely about his knowledge of evidence that other News of the World employees had been involved in phone-hacking and other wrongdoing. But Mr Myler stood by the evidence to MPs saying he had always "sought to be accurate and consistent".
The report also suggests Mr Myler and the others were used as scapegoats, to some extent, by senior management.
When Rupert Murdoch told the Leveson Inquiry that a "cover-up" at the News of the World had been kept hidden from him, he said Mr Myler was among those who had failed to report back to him.
Mr Myler, who became editor in 2007, told the inquiry in 2011 that he had accepted phone hacking must have been limited because police had not shown otherwise. But he said then he feared "bombs under the newsroom floor" in terms of possible widespread wrongdoing in the past.

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