News / Europe

Britain's High-Profile Phone-Hacking Trial to Begin

FILE - This combination of file pictures shows (L) former News of the World editor, Andy Coulson, and (R) former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks.
FILE - This combination of file pictures shows (L) former News of the World editor, Andy Coulson, and (R) former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks.
Reuters
The trial of Rupert Murdoch's former British newspaper chief and Prime Minister David Cameron's ex-media head begins on Monday in what will be Britain's most high-profile and eagerly-awaited criminal case in years.
 
Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson, both former editors of Murdoch's now defunct News of the World tabloid, are accused of conspiring to illegally access voicemail messages on mobile phones belonging to politicians, the rich and famous, as well as victims of crime and ordinary people, to secure exclusives.
 
They deny all charges.
 
The scandal surrounding phone-hacking has sent shockwaves through the top echelons of the British establishment and shaken Murdoch's News Corp empire.
 
The furor has already revealed the close ties between Britain's press barons, police chiefs and senior politicians, and prompted a year-long public inquiry into newspaper ethics. The industry is still at loggerheads with the government over how it should be regulated.
 
Detectives launched an investigation in January 2011 and since then more than 125 people have been arrested and more than 40 charged with offenses.
 
The most prominent are Coulson and Brooks, a close friend of Cameron. He attended her wedding in 2009 along with the then-Prime Minister Gordon Brown.
 
Brooks was the first female editor of Murdoch's top-selling Sun paper and had risen to become head of News International, News Corp's British newspaper arm, when the furore over phone-hacking arose, leading to her resignation.
 
Coulson, who quit the News of the World in 2007, had acted as Cameron's communications chief until he too resigned in 2011 saying the issue had become a distraction for the government.
 
They were both arrested in July 2011 and later charged with conspiracy to illegally intercept communications.
 
Brooks is also accused of two counts of conspiracy to commit misconduct in a public office during her time at the Sun, and two counts of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
 
Coulson is also charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office.
 
Joining them in the dock accused of some of the charges are Stuart Kuttner, the long-time former managing editor of the News of the World; Ian Edmondson, the tabloid's ex-news editor; Clive Goodman, former royal editor at the News of the World; Cheryl Carter, Brooks's personal assistant; Brooks's husband Charlie; and Mark Hanna, News International's head of security.
 
On Monday, the jury are due to be chosen for the six-month trial with prosecutors expected to outline the case against the accused on Tuesday.
 
Dozens of other journalists are due to go on trial next year following the conclusion of this case, while police are also actively considering bringing corporate charges against Murdoch's British newspaper business.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

US Secret Service Head: White House Security Lapse 'Unacceptable'

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after a recent intrusion at the White House: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid