U.K. Police Arrest Journalist, 2 Cops in Hacking Probe

British police investigating bribery at News Corp’s Sun tabloid and other titles arrested a journalist and two police officers in the probe.

A 39-year-old journalist was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to corrupt and cause misconduct in public office, the Metropolitan Police Service said today in a statement. The two police officers were arrested for suspected misconduct in public office and corruption.

The arrests were prompted by information given to police by New York-based News Corp.’s Management Standards Committee, which is conducting an internal probe into phone hacking and bribery. The hacking scandal led to the closure of the company’s News of the World tabloid in 2011.

The BBC said Anthony France, a crime reporter at the Sun, had been arrested, without citing any sources. It also quoted an e-mail to staff from Mike Darcey, chief executive of News Corp.’s News International unit, that described the arrest as “disappointing” and said the company had provided the reporter with a lawyer.

A call to France’s phone at The Sun was answered by a colleague who said he wasn’t in the office today. An official at News International declined to comment or identify the journalist who was arrested.

Fifty-six people, including journalists at News Corp.’s Sun, have now been arrested in the bribery investigation, called Operation Elveden.

The three men, who weren’t identified by police, are being interviewed by investigators over suspected offenses between 2004 and 2011, according to the statement. The journalist was arrested in Hertfordshire, north of London and the police officers were both arrested in Surrey, south of the capital.

London police said in an e-mailed statement that three men arrested today were released on bail, “to return to London police stations on a date in April.”