Thursday, 9 June 2011

Phone Hacking: The Telegraph opens a second front

More woe for News International this morning with reports that a whole host of new (and very prominent) VIPs have allegedly been hacked, most notably Tony Blair and Kate Middleton.

Old news? It looks it at first sight but there are a number of key points to quickly make.

Firstly, if the reports are true we have a new private investigator in question, a certain Mr Jonathan Rees. The News International defence that this was all the work of a rogue reporter (Clive Goodman) aided by a lone investigator (Glenn Mulcaire) has already proved risible, but this is further embarrassment.

More importantly, the news that Kate Middleton’s bank account has been hacked in 2005 demolishes the News International defence that all hacking was undertaken between 2002 and 2004.

Perhaps most importantly, the Telegraph’s running of the story so prominently is a clear opening of a second front in the hacking scandal. Up until now The Guardian, and to a lesser extent the BBC, has made the running with this story with other media organisations tending to shun it. The cynics would suggest that those in glasshouses were wary of throwing stones!

However, the Telegraph in its role as protector of all things Royal and Establishment is clearly going into bat on this one. That’s more bad news for News International because as this story gets more a public airing the more the pressure builds on senior management and the louder the calls for a full Public Inquiry.


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