purejuice: (Default)
You read it here first.

NOTW legal manager Tom Crone and editor Myler assert that James Murdoch's testimony before parliament on the payout to soccer exec Taylor -- viewed in this space as where the rubber meets the road on James' criminal liability -- was "mistaken".


When the Guardian pointed out in the wake of his parliamentary testimony that Murdoch's son had sought to blame them for concealment, one friend of the two men said: "To contradict James will be as good as coming out and calling him a liar."

Myler and Crone, the News of the World's then editor and News International's top newspaper lawyer, both of whom have lost their jobs in the wake of the phone-hacking affair, subsequently spent the day debating what to do.

If their statement of Thursday nightis correct, Rupert's son will have proved to have misled parliament. He will also have destroyed the Murdoch family's last line of defence against the scandal – that they knew nothing, and had been betrayed by those underlings they trusted.

Myler and Crone are, in effect, accusing James Murdoch of being part of the cover-up, one in which the company's executives vainly twisted and turned to conceal the truth about phone hacking and blame it on a single "rogue reporter".


purejuice: (Default)
...cripples the inquiry by adding the BBC, one of Murdoch's betes noire, to the list of press suspects to be investigated. The Guardian and the Independent, who have lead the phone hacking inquiry, are also to be added to the list of media to be investigated by the judicial inquiry Cameron himself set up two weeks ago to contain the phone hacking scandal.

"And not just at NI but also ... the BBC, the Independent and the Guardian. This is a cathartic moment to sort it out and put it on a proper footing."

This also makes the inquiry untenable in terms of getting it done with dispatch.

The inquiry has been divided into two parts, with the investigation into hacking allegations to start only after criminal allegations have been settled.

In other news of tiny nuggets that are likely flashpoints, the BBC reports that Murdoch has given his lawyers, Harbottle and Lewis, permission to respond to police and judicial inquiries. Harbottle are the people who sat on incriminating hack/bribery emails for years. Harbottle screamed bloody murder Tuesday after the Murdochs' testimony that Harbottle's response to inquiry was limited by attorney-client privilege. In a statement, Harbottle implied that if NI released them from the confidentiality privilege, the story would be very different from the Murdochs' testimony. At issue was the Murdochs' insistence that in every case of malfeasance, they were relying on the advice of counsel -- among other things, on the defense that the hacking was confined to one rogue reporter and that nothing else, including police bribery, apparently, had gone down.

Along with Scotland Yard and its allegations against Cameron, I think Harbottle will be the source of serious allegations against the Murdochs.

I'm hoping this is the beginning of the holy shit story.
purejuice: (Default)
These are the lawyers who sat on the incriminating stash of NotW e-mails (I believe) for four years. Rupe and James frequently testified today that they relied on the advice of counsel to assert that the investigation was over and there was no further "emerging evidence". Harbottle and Lewis quickly issued this denial:

Harbottle & Lewis said in a statement issued this evening:

News International representatives referred to our advice in their statements today before the Parliamentary Select Committee, both as a result of questioning and on their own account.

We asked News International to release us from our professional duties of confidentiality in order that we could respond to any inaccurate statements or contentions and to explain events in 2007.

News International declined that request, and so we are still unable to respond in any detail as to our advice or the scope of our instructions in 2007, which is a matter of great regret.



purejuice: (Default)

January 2012



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