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Wednesday 24 February 2010

Murdoch Is Served (11)

As I predicted earlier this month, more has come to light on Phonehackgate, with the House of Commons committee on Culture, Media and Sport producing a damning report into the affair.

What I hadn’t realised earlier is that the twinkle toed yet domestically combative Rebekah Brooks (née Wade), now chief executive of News International, has repeatedly refused to appear before the committee: this would not have impressed them.

The report does not pull punches: the verdict, unanimously given, was that News International had sought to conceal the truth about what really happened. Contradictory testimony is highlighted, along with such phrases as “collective amnesia” and “deliberate obfuscation”.

Moreover, the investigation has vindicated Guardian writer Nick Davies, author of the excellent Flat Earth News, finding evidence to back up his assertions. But the Murdoch press has not been slow in biting back.

News International have asserted that the committee is in some kind of conspiracy with the Guardian – highly unlikely – while managing not to realise that this is a cross party body operating under the chairmanship of a Tory MP.

Where does the process go from here? Well, there are calls for a judicial review circulating. That could be bad for Rupe, and not favourable to Young Dave, who now employs Andy Coulson, the editor of the News Of The World at the time. One thing is sure: this blog will be returning to the subject before long.

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