London Police Arrest 13th Person in News Corp. Phone-Hacking Investigation
By Ben Moshinsky – Aug 18, 2011 7:33 AM ET
A 38-year-old man was arrested by London police investigating phone-hacking at the now-shuttered News of the World newspaper.
The man is the 13th person to be detained since authorities renewed a probe this year to determine if the practice extended beyond a former royal reporter at the tabloid and a private investigator who were jailed in 2007 for intercepting voice mails.
The man, who a police spokesman declined to identify, was arrested by appointment today “on suspicion of conspiring to unlawfully intercept voice mails,” according to an e-mailed statement from the Metropolitan Police in London.
Public outcry over the hacking scandal, including claims journalists accessed the voice mail of a murdered schoolgirl, led News Corp. (NWSA) to close the News of the World and end its 7.8 billion-pound ($12.9 billion) bid to buy the 61 percent of British Sky Broadcasting Group Plc it doesn’t already own.
At least nine of the 13 people arrested in investigations of phone hacking and bribes to police have ties to the News of the World, including former editor Rebekah Brooks, who resigned July 15 as chief executive officer of News Corp.’s News International unit.Andy Coulson, another former editor of the tabloid, was arrested last month, six months after resigning as British Prime Minister David Cameron’s spokesman.
Documents and statements released by the U.K. Parliament this week in the News Corp. phone-hacking scandal contradicted testimony given by company executives, including chief operating officer James Murdoch, on how much they knew about the illegal practices and when.
Clive Goodman, the former royal reporter made accusations in a 2007 letter that hacking was widespread at News of the World, editors discussed it during meetings and that he was promised his job back if he didn’t reveal the problem to law enforcement.
The evidence may result in Murdoch being recalled to Parliament to answer more questions about a confidential settlement he approved with one of the first known hacking victims, according to a statement issued by the Culture, Media and Sport Committee, which is investigating the scandal.
The information prompted lawmakers to request further statements from several executives, including Les Hinton, who had led News Corp.’s U.K. publishing unit and recently resigned as publisher and CEO of Dow Jones & Co.
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