Police Asked to Hand Over Seized Notebooks in Phone-Hacking Case

Sky Andrew, a U.K. sports agent suing News Corp. (NWSA)’s News of the World newspaper over phone hacking, asked a judge to force police to hand over notebooks obtained during a criminal investigation five years ago.

Jeremy Reed, Andrew’s lawyer, told Justice Geoffrey Vos in London that he was seeking the disclosure of four notebooks seized by the Metropolitan Police from Glen Mulcaire, a private detective employed by the News of the World. Earlier in the hearing, which started yesterday, Reed asked only for a selection of pages from the books.

Reed has “an unending wish-list for documents,” Vos said. “You are sort of treating the police as if they are the fund of knowledge on which your case is being created, I’m a little concerned by that.”

Andrew is one of more than a half dozen celebrities filing lawsuits over allegations private voice-mail messages were accessed for News of the World stories. The paper’s former royal editor Clive Goodman and Mulcaire were jailed in 2007 for accessing the phone messages of members of the royal family.

Reed said the notebooks would allow Andrew to see if there is any information that the police failed to notice. It will also help build a picture of how Mulcaire worked, he said.

Mulcaire in 2006 admitted five other counts of phone hacking relating to Andrew, publicist Max Clifford, model Elle Macpherson, soccer player Sol Campbell, lawmaker Simon Hughes and soccer executive Gordon Taylor.

Criminal Probe

The police said in January they were re-opening a criminal investigation into phone hacking after receiving new evidence provided by News of the World.

Edwin Buckett, a lawyer for the Metropolitan Police, said that to make sure that potential suspects weren’t “tipped off” about the progress of their investigation, the judge should consider allowing the police to delay disclosing more information for three months.

News of the World lawyer Anthony Hudson said he was “neutral” about the applications. Vos said he would give judgment at a later date on Reed’s first, more limited, request for information, and hear argument at another hearing about Reed’s request for the full notebooks.

The case is: Skylet Andrew v. News Group Newspapers Limited, HC10C01363, High Court of London.

To contact the reporter on this story: James Lumley in London at jlumley1@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net.

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