Dear Commons Community,
The British prosecution system keeps coming after Rupert Murdoch’s associates at the News Corporation. The New York Times is reporting:
“In a new turn in the scandals swirling around Rupert Murdoch’s British newspaper outpost, prosecutors said on Tuesday that two former top executives would be charged with paying bribes of up to $160,000 to public officials, in addition to several earlier charges against them.
The Crown Prosecution Service identified the onetime aides as Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson, both of whom have had close personal or professional ties to Prime Minister David Cameron. Mr. Cameron hired Mr. Coulson as his director of communications while in opposition and kept him on after coming to power in the 2010 elections.
On Tuesday, Mr. Coulson, 44, a former editor of a Murdoch tabloid, The News of the World, denied two charges relating to periods before he joined Mr. Cameron’s staff in 2007 and said he would fight them in court.
Ms. Brooks, 44, who is accused of conspiring with another journalist to pay $160,000 over seven years to a Defense Ministry official, was a neighbor and personal friend of Mr. Cameron.
In one of several inquiries into the hacking scandal, she testified in May that she and Mr. Cameron kept in touch by telephone, text message and e-mail, meeting at lunches and dinners and socializing at parties, summer outings and Christmas celebrations.
The charge of bribing a Defense Ministry official is potentially the most serious of all those drawn up by prosecutors so far in the scandal that has enveloped the Murdoch media empire in Britain.”
For anyone who has followed the hacking scandal that has rocked Rupert Murdoch’s news conglomerate, there is little sympathy for the individuals involved.