News of the World executives may have been aware of widespread phone hacking at the U.K. tabloid since 2007, U.K. lawmaker Damian Collins said, citing a letter by former royal reporter Clive Goodman.
Goodman wrote that hacking was discussed at editorial conferences in a letter in which he was suing for unfair dismissal, Collins said in an interview today. Goodman is the only journalist from the newspaper who has been jailed for phone hacking.
Alice Macandrew, a spokeswoman for News Corp. (NWSA), declined to comment on Clive Goodman’s accusations.
The Parliament’s Culture, Media and Sport Committee today examined responses from former News Corp. employees and found “devastating revelations,” Labour Party lawmaker Tom Watson, who sits on the committee, told reporters in London. The lawmakers still found differences in the statements on how much senior News Corp. executives knew about the scope of phone hacking.
Tom Crone, the News of the World legal manager, and Colin Myler, its one-time editor, are likely to be recalled in September to answer further questions, said John Whittingdale, who chairs the committee. The lawmakers will probably also recall James Murdoch, who would appear after Crone and Myler, Whittingdale said. The committee won’t recall James’ father Rupert Murdoch, the chief executive officer of News Corp.
James Murdoch, who has overseen the News International U.K. arm since 2007, told lawmakers last month that he hadn’t realized until late 2010 that phone hacking was widespread at News Corp.’s News of the World. That’s been contradicted by Crone and Myler, who said they informed him in 2008 about an e- mail that suggested more reporters had been involved, leading lawmakers to demand responses to explain the inconsistency.
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