Brooks Pleads Not Guilty in News Corp. Hacking Case

Rebekah Brooks, the former chief executive officer of News Corp.’s U.K. unit, pleaded not guilty to charges she conspired to hack into phone messages.

Brooks, 45, also pleaded not guilty to charges she conspired to pervert the course of justice and charges that she conspired to commit misconduct in public office. Brooks and nine others entered not guilty pleas at a hearing in London today.

Brooks, a past editor of both the News of the World and News Corp.’s Sun daily newspaper, was also charged over claims she perverted the course of justice along with her husband, Charlie Brooks, and six other people. The defendants, including a former News Corp. security official, pleaded not guilty to the perversion of justice charges today.

Along with Brooks, former News of the World Managing Editor Stuart Kuttner and Assistant News Editor James Weatherup pleaded not guilty to phone-hacking charges. Clive Goodman, a former reporter at the paper, pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office.

A three-month trial is tentatively scheduled to start in September.

Other defendants in the obstruction case include Cheryl Carter, Brooks’s longtime former personal assistant; Mark Hanna, the former head of security at News International; Paul Edwards, Brooks’s chauffeur; and Lee Sandell, a former security-staff member.

(Corrects to remove information from sixth paragraph of story published yesterday.)
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