Video: Actor Grant wins right to view evidence
Published 21/07/2011 | 05:00
ACTOR Hugh Grant has won a court order requiring London's Metropolitan Police to hand over documents with any evidence that his voicemails were hacked into by a private investigator working for News International's now-defunct 'News of the World' tabloid or other newspapers.
Mr Grant and journalist Jemima Khan made the request on July 14 in London and it went unopposed by the police yesterday.
The police contacted the claimants with evidence that indicated their voicemails may have been accessed by Glenn Mulcaire, a private investigator who was jailed for phone hacking on behalf of the tabloid, Judge Geoffrey Vos said today.
There is "a clear inference that Mr Mulcaire may have accessed the claimants' voicemails", their lawyer, David Sherborne, said at the hearing.
"They need this information in order to bring proceedings against Mulcaire or News Group," he said, referring to the publisher of 'The Sun' and, formerly, the 'News of the World'.
Dozens of politicians, celebrities and athletes who believe their phone was hacked have filed lawsuits against Mulcaire and News Group. The evidence that has been produced in the civil lawsuits triggered the latest police investigation, which opened in January.
"It is arguably the case that telephone interception and a breach of privacy may have been carried out," Judge Vos said in granting the order. The judge said a test case in civil litigation against the media company may go to trial in January.
The allegations have snowballed over the past two weeks as evidence that the tabloid may have hacked into the voicemail of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler and paid bribes to police was disclosed.