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article imageUK phone hacking scandal – shocking new revelations

By Alexander Baron     Jul 6, 2011 in Crime
The UK phone hacking scandal continues with new revelations and claims of an incestuous relationship between the "News Of The World" and the Metropolitan Police.
Further to yesterday’s article The British Press in contempt and July 4 article “News of the World” accused of hacking Milly Dowler's phone, there have been shocking new allegations AND revelations in this fast moving affair. Last night, the early evening news on Channel 4 interviewed the actor Hugh Grant, and Simon Greenberg of News International, the latter of whom didn’t seem to understand the concept of an independent investigation.
The phone hacking scandal began with allegations that the mobile phones of celebrities had been targeted by tabloid newspapers, one in particular, in the course of their usual pursuit of non-stories about sex, drugs, and other tittle tattle that appeals to the lowest common denominator.
Last night though it took an altogether more serious turn. In March 1987, private detective Daniel Morgan was murdered in the car park of the Golden Lion public house in Sydenham, South London. According to his brother: “Twenty-four years after Daniel’s murder, the Met has finally admitted that their first investigation of this crime was crippled by police corruption.”
Alastair Morgan issued this statement after the collapse of the case against five men implicated in the murder. On last night’s Channel 4 News, it was revealed that a detective who had been assigned to reinvestigate the crime in 2002 was put under surveillance by the News Of The World, and when he realised he was being followed, the people following him were put under surveillance by the Met in turn.
The waters have been furthered muddied by claims that the paper had more prosaic ways to obtain information about police officers and police investigations, by crossing the palms of some as yet unnamed senior officers with silver, indeed it is believed Daniel Morgan was murdered because he was investigating allegations of police corruption.
Other people targeted by phone hackers at the behest of the paper are said to include the parents of Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman, and relatives of the 7/7 victims.
Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman were two ten year old girls who were murdered in 2002 by Ian Huntley; Huntley was convicted in December 2003.
On July 7, 2005, four suicide bombers targeted London and murdered 52 innocent people in separate attacks. Hundreds more were injured.
It goes without saying that for a tabloid newspaper or anyone to intrude on the private grief of people under such circumstances without lawful authority beggars belief.
Hugh Grant, who has conducted his own investigation, said he had long maintained that it wasn’t only the rich and famous who were being so targeted, and called for a public inquiry not simply into such improprieties by the News Of The World and its parent company but by the entire tabloid press.
Simon Greenberg on the other hand was quite happy to see the paper’s internal investigation presided over by Rebekah Brooks, who at the material time had been its editor. When pressed by Channel 4’s Jon Snow, he didn’t seem to understand this might just involve a conflict of interest.
Ultimately though it may only be commercial pressures that bring News International and the rest of the tabloids into line. There are signs this may already be happening; yesterday it was revealed that the Ford motor company has pulled its advertising, and several other major players are said to be reviewing their relationships with the News Of The World in view of the latest revelations and ongoing police investigation.
More about phone hacking, Hugh grant, Amanda Jane Dowler, News of the world, Ford
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