Jul 092009
 July 9, 2009  Posted by  Business, Non-U.S.

Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World and Sun will be investigated by the Metropolitan Police in London over claims they obtained personal information through deception.

The police will look into the allegations, Commissioner Paul Stephenson said in an e-mailed statement today. Thirty-one journalists working for the tabloid newspapers acquired such information through “blagging,” or underhand means, the U.K.’s Information Commission said.

Read more on Bloomberg.com. This has been and will be a very big story in the UK.

Update 1: Despite accusations about phone hacking of voicemails that were repeated in numerous UK publications, The Independent now reports:

Scotland Yard will conduct “no further investigation” of phone tapping allegations against the News of the World, the Assistant Commissioner John Yates said today. But the Crown Prosecution Service is to carry out an urgent review.

Mr Yates also said detectives had found no evidence that John Prescott’s phone was tapped.

Earlier, the Metropolitan Police said it was urgently trying to “establish the facts” after claims that its officers failed to act on evidence that reporters targeted an array of politicians and celebrities with illegal methods.

The row also piled pressure on the Tories’ PR chief, Andy Coulson, who was the editor of the Sunday tabloid at the time of the alleged practices.

Conservative leader David Cameron moved to defend his director of communications as Labour MPs lined up to demand his sacking, comparing him to ousted Labour spin doctor Damian McBride.

The cross-party Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee announced this morning that it was reopening an inquiry it held after the News of the World‘s royal editor, Clive Goodman, was jailed for using illegal surveillance techniques.

More here.

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