Former Editor Of News Of The World Arrested In Hacking Case

The legal shoes are starting to drop in the News Of  The World phone hacking scandal

Former News of the World editor Andy Coulson has been arrested by police investigating phone hacking and corruption allegations.

Ex-NoW royal editor Clive Goodman, jailed in 2007 for phone hacking, has been arrested over corruption claims.

It came as Prime Minister David Cameron defended his decision to employ Mr Coulson and announced two inquiries – one led by a judge – into the scandal.

Mr Coulson has denied any knowledge of phone hacking while he was NoW editor.


Mr Coulson, 43, was arrested at 1030 BST on Friday by detectives investigating allegations of hacking the phones of various people in the news and is also being questioned about corruption allegations.

He was arrested by appointment at a south London police station and is in custody.

A number of suited men, thought to be police officers, entered Mr Coulson’s south London home with large plastic crates at about 1200 BST.

Meanwhile, police are also investigating allegations that thousands of emails between News Corp executives and the paper have been deleted:

Police are investigating evidence that a News International executive may have deleted millions of emails from an internal archive, in an apparent attempt to obstruct Scotland Yard’s inquiry into the phone-hacking scandal.

The archive is believed to have reached back to January 2005 revealing daily contact between News of the World editors, reporters and outsiders, including private investigators. The messages are potentially highly valuable both for the police and for the numerous public figures who are suing News International.

According to legal sources close to the police inquiry, a senior executive is believed to have deleted ‘massive quantities’ of the archive on two separate occasions, leaving only a small fraction to be disclosed. One of the alleged deletions is said to have been made at the end of January this year, just as Scotland Yard was launching Operation Weeting, its new inquiry into the affair.

The allegation directly contradicts repeated claims from News International that it is co-operating fully with police in order to expose its history of illegal news-gathering. It is likely to be seen as evidence that the company could not pass a ‘fit and proper person’ test for its proposed purchase of BSkyB.

A Guardian investigation has found that, in addition to deleting emails, the company has also:

• infuriated police by leaking sensitive information in spite of an undertaking to police that it would keep it confidential; and

• risked prosecution for perverting the course of justice by trying to hide the contents of a senior reporter’s desk after he was arrested by Weeting detectives in April.

The newspaper may be closing, but something tells me that this story is far from over.

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. James in LA says:

    This scandal has already cost the new PM his legacy. He’d cooked. He may stumble on like Major after the sterling bit, and Blair after playing W’s poodle, but he is done politically. One wonders if any communications amid the “millions” that were deleted included any missives to executives at FOX news and/or the U.S. government. If even one American is touched by hacking, FOX news is dead. If the U.S. government is involved, things will be getting very ugly indeed.

    I suspect the e-mails are not fully deleted. Such is nearly impossible in this age.

  2. Muffler says:

    So let us recap. Murdoch’s senior management break the law thousands of time. Murdoch fires nobody… deletes all the emails… closes the paper…. fires everyone to protect his managers and mergers…and hides behind corporate structures… Enough already… start arresting people. The act of deleting emails intentionally (and now under the guise of closing the company) is a pretty good proof the cover up started a long time ago.