Monday 19 March 2018

Brooks asked for 'bug sweep', hacking trial told

Rebekah Brooks leaving the Old Bailey in 2012
Rebekah Brooks leaving the Old Bailey in 2012

Emily Pennink

Former 'News of the World' editor Rebekah Brooks asked for her office to be "discreetly" swept for bugs, the London hacking trial has heard.

In January 2011, months before the closure of the 'News of the World' and her resignation as chief executive of News International, Ms Brooks emailed a request copying in former head of security and co-defendant Mark Hanna. It read: "Can you have my office swept . . . thanks. Discreetly."

News International offices were routinely searched for listening devices to ensure rival journalists could not find out about scoops and to keep private any discussions about the BSkyB bid, Jane Viner, News International group director for property and facilities, confirmed. Ms Brooks had been sent "threatening mail" during 2011 as hacking allegations emerged, she also told the Old Bailey trial.

Abusive mail was usually intercepted in the post room and, if it got through the first check, it would be picked up by personal assistants, she said.

Former 'News of the World' and 'Sun' editor Ms Brooks (45), of Churchill, Oxfordshire, and Mr Hanna deny a charge of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. All seven defendants in the case -- including Ms Brooks' husband Charles Brooks -- Cheryl Carter, Stuart Kuttner, Clive Goodman and Andy Coulson, deny all the charges.

The trial continues.

Irish Independent

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