Rebekah Brooks arrested over phone-hacking allegations (Lead)

July 17th, 2011 - 9:05 pm ICT by IANS  

David Cameron London, July 17 (IANS) Rebekah Brooks, the ex-chief executive of the News International (NI), was arrested Sunday by police probing the allegations of phone hacking by the News of the World and alleged bribing of police officers for leaking sensitive information.

Brooks is a close aide of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, who owns News International.

The Metropolitan Police said a 43-year-old woman was arrested Sunday noon, by appointment at a London police station, the Guardian reported.

Brooks was due to give evidence before MPs of the culture select committee Tuesday.

An arrest by appointment on a Sunday by police is unusual, the Guardian stated.

In a statement the Met said: “The MPS (Metropolitan Police Service) has this afternoon, Sunday 17 July, arrested a female in connection with allegations of corruption and phone hacking.

“At approximately 12.00, a 43-year-old woman was arrested by appointment at a London police station by officers from Operation Weeting (phone hacking investigation) together with officers from Operation Elveden (bribing of police officers investigation). She is currently in custody.

“She was arrested on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications, contrary to Section1(1) Criminal Law Act 1977 and on suspicion of corruption allegations contrary to Section 1 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1906.”

Brooks, the embattled chief executive of Rupert Murdoch’s British newspaper operations, resigned Friday following days of mounting political pressure over the phone-hacking scandal.

The News of the World tabloid, of which she is an ex-editor, is accused of hacking into phones of crime victims, celebrities and politicians.

Police identified 4,000 possible targets, causing owner Murdoch to order its closure. The paper, which had a run of 168 years, shut July 10.

In January 2007, royal editor Clive Goodman and private investigator Glenn Mulcaire were both jailed for plotting to intercept voice mail messages.

Mulcaire had hacked into teenage murder victim Milly Dowler’s mobile phone and then deleted messages.

The phone-hacking scandal caused an uproar in Britain and led British Prime Minister David Cameron Wednesday to tell parliament that a “firestorm” was engulfing parts of the media, and police and those who had committed the phone hacking offences must be prosecuted.

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