Hacking Trial Live Tweets – 18 Dec

Wednesday 18 December 2013

The Prosecution Case Continues
Third Stuart Kuttner Police Interview – 30 August 2011
Fourth Stuart Kuttner Police Interview – 9 September 2011
Fifth Stuart Kuttner Police Interview – 18 May 2012
Prosecution Evidence on “top left” tasking
Giving evidence – Operation Weeting Detective DC Oskiewicz
Counsel for Rebekah Brooks cross examines Tasking Evidence

The Prosecution Case Continues
Third Stuart Kuttner Police Interview – 30 August 2011
Back at #hackingtrial for the penultimate day before Christmas. Continuing with Stuart Kuttner‘s evidence.
30th August 2011 interview with Kuttner: Bryant Heron reading in as him. DC Backers as interviewing officer two years ago
Kuttner is shown the contracts signed by Mulcaire and Miskiw. 2003 contract has a letter of agreement attached.
Kuttner can’t recall the Mulcaire contracts but the figures are familiar
Kuttner says of these agreements “there may have been a dialogue with the editor” about them
Kuttner was an assistant editor on Special Investigations – the unit run by Greg Miskiw which employed Mulcaire
Kuttner is shown a 2005 contract for Mulcaire signed by Neville Thurlbeck. He says he doesn’t believe he’s seen this document before
Kuttner says he wouldn’t have expected Thurlbeck to have signed this without permission of News Editor.
Kuttner is shown a ‘Paul Williams’ (Mulcaire alias) contract over a Gordon Taylor inquiry for £7k.
Kuttner says he’s relying on Parliamentary Inquiry for his memory of Paul Williams and Gordon Taylor settlement
Saunder points out the Williams contract is “very strange… won’t publish anything you say but will pay £7k when we publish it”
Kuttner is asked about the £2k Mulcaire was paid after arrest and conviction. “I simply don’t recall…. sorry I don’t know. Don’t recall’
Kuttner is shown a Mulcaire authorisation with his signature in the bottom right and notes news editor’s signature
The Mulcaire invoice signed by Kuttner specifies “research” and is dated from early 2007 – after Mulcaire’s sentencing
Kuttner is asked about Milly Dowler: “I recall going to see the police in Guildford to see if there was anything the paper could do…”
“I took someone from the paper with me, and spoke to the then Chief Constable of Surrey, Dennis O’Connor,” Kuttner on Milly Dowler case
“It was a time I was quite deeply involved in the Sarah’s Law campaign,” says Kuttner of his visit to Surrey Police re Milly Dowler
Kuttner saw an officer in charge of Dowler investigation with a female reporter he can’t recall
Kuttner recalled the fact of an “exploratory meeting” – he can’t remember how long the meeting was or what was agreed
“I would have known at the time but I don’t know now,” Kuttner says of who in the NOTW was involved in the Dowler case
Kuttner says the purpose of the phone call with Chief Constable was to build a connection.
“I don’t think I had any further involvement,” says Kuttner on Dowler. Can’t remember if a reward was offered. Would have talked to editor
Kuttner says of Dowler “if I was running a newspaper I would throw a lot of firepower at it”
Kuttner can’t remember how many phone calls he made to Surrey Police. He also remembers a press officer “I think it was a woman”
When asked if he had any further involvement with Milly Dowler Kuttner replies; “Not that I can recall”
“Making notes is one thing… making a recording, even a written recording, is another,” says Kuttner of his contacts with Surrey Police
Kuttner says he wasn’t involved in strategy or coverage of Dowler story, but “only the editor” would assign personnel on scale
Kuttner remembers the police had “some suspects locally… possibly the girl’s father” over Dowler disappearance in 2002
Kuttner can’t recall if he wrote down the Dowler information: “I absorbed it…. I wasn’t the person assigning reporters to the story”
Kuttner can’t remember if Thurlbeck and Miskiw were involved in Dowler story, or if they reported back and discuss strategy
Kuttner says he didn’t assign any inquiry agent on Dowler case, or task Mulcaire
Kuttner says Dowler case would have been discussed at daily management meetings and editorial conferences “like every other paper”
All Kuttner says of Milly Dowler phone hacking is “what I”ve read in the papers”
“It seemed to me to be a disturbing and quite appalling event” says Kuttner of Dowler phone hacking.
Kuttner was asked if he was ever told of content of Milly’s voicemail mesages: “not at all, no”
Kuttner has no recollection of “redacting or changing” the Dowler story on the basis of information on her voicemails
Kuttner says the in house lawyer would see words and pictures of story as it developed. He can’t recall this in Dowler case
Kuttner is asked about an email he sent to Sarah McGregor press liaison for Surrey Police on 20/04/02 re Dowler
Kuttner is shown a couple of pages from Mulcaire’s notes with a ‘Neville’ tasking and details on Milly Dowler‘s family
Kuttner is shown another Mulcaire note with a ‘Greg’ tasking. He can’t recall if Thurlbeck and Miskiw were involved in the Dowler story
Kuttner now thinks the email to press liaison in Surrey might have been about setting up meeting re ‘Amanda Dowler’: it is read out to him
Email from Kuttner says the NOTW contacted’ Dowler Squad with “information we have received… messages left on Amanda’s mobile phone”
Kuttner’s refers to a message from a recruitment agency left on Milly Dowler‘s phone: “I don’t recall any other detail”
“Presumably this is information that has been given to me by someone,” says Kuttner of messages on Milly Dowler‘s voicemail
Kuttner’s email also offers to provide Surrey Police with tape recordings of Milly’s voicemail. “I don’t know at this distance” where from
Kuttner’s email says they “radically and substantially amended” the Dowler article but he can’t remember actually doing that.
He can’t remember any other details from his email about a hoaxer calling Milly’s mother, checking into a hotel etc.
Kuttner email goes into more forensic detail about the hoaxer and the voice mail messages. “I don’t doubt I wrote it, but I can’t recall it”
Kuttner’s email goes into more details demanding three answers from Surrey Police about their Dowler inquiries.
Kuttner on email: “these events were nine years ago, and not uppermost in my mind, I mean not even in my mind”
Kuttner is asked by police in 2011 interview about being in possession of Milly’s voicemail. He says “I’ll see what inquiries I can make”
“I must have got this information from someone, but I don’t know who” Kuttner says of claiming he had voicemails of missing Milly Dowler
“You clear stipulate you have in your possession voicemails,” says police officer. Kuttner replies: “Not in my personal possession”
The two page email from Kuttner in 2002 to Surrey Police about Dowler: “I need some time to investigate… if you can help me…”
“I don’t believe you wouldn’t have checked the facts before going to police,” says officer. Kuttner says he needs time to read the email
Kuttner goes through email “I’d like to get to the bottom of this… and talk to people at NOTW” about the email: Officer: “What people?”
“You knew her voicemails had been hacked,” says officer to Kuttner in 2011 interview. Pause in interview.
Fourth Stuart Kuttner Police Interview – 9 September 2011
Another Kuttner interview 9th Sept 2011: his legal representative complains about lack of advance disclosure and neurologists report
Kuttner’s legal representative asks for advance disclosure because of his clients poor health
Kuttner wants to read in an advance statement into the police tape about his email to Surrey Police on Dowler
Kuttner says “I have no memory of it all… who provided me with information…. Unable to assist further at this stage.”
Kuttner’s written statement is handed over to police in an interview (read out verbatim in court) from September 2011
Police interviewers return to the subject of Milly Dowler phone hacking, and Kuttner’s email to Surrey Police possess her ‘phone messages’
Kuttner’s written statement says “It’s not helpful to speculate about this letter.” to Surrey Police about Milly Dowler voice messages 2002
In reply to Weeting Detectives Kuttner says “in light of restraints put on me, I don’t think it’s helpful to speculate” about Dowler hacks
“I have, to the best of my knowledge, nothing to do with that letter,” says Kuttner. Then corrects: “No, I have not denied that letter.”
“I have nothing whatsoever to hide, but I don’t think it’s helpful to speculate,” says Kuttner about his email citing Dowler voicemails
“At this distance of time, and in the context of health considerations, I have no knowledge of the letter,” Kuttner says of email
Kuttner’s counsel Caplan cuts short the re-reading: “My client just keeps reiterating he can’t remember.” We jump forward in interview
“To the best of my knowledge, I have had no dealings with Mulcaire,” says Kuttner. Denies conspiring with, or tasking him.
Interviewing officers cite Kuttner’s notebooks with both the number of McKenzie and Milly Dowler‘s number, and relevant NOTW articles
Kuttner accepts that he was the ‘formal go-between’ between NOTW and Surrey Police
Police officer puts to Kuttner facts from his diary; he replies “I think I used the word speculation, because I don’t recall precise events”
“I don’t accept your terminology,” says Kuttner to interviewing police officers accusing him of substantial involvement in Dowler story
Kuttner says PA had access to this email but wouldn’t have sent police letter. “I do not recollect the letter, nor do I deny the letter.”
Fifth Stuart Kuttner Police Interview – 18 May 2012
18th May 2012 interview with Kuttner now being read out in court with Bryant Heron playing part of Kuttner: DC backers police interviewers
On this occasion Kuttner’s legal representative has a prepared statement as Kuttner does not want to answer any more questions
This is the fifth time Kuttner has been interviewed under arrest. His prepared statement denies phone hacking and bribery charges
Kuttner’s prepared statement says he’s 72, and despite brain stem stroke been “plunged into a nightmare” with these “interrogations”
“The pressure of this intense police activity is intolerable,” says Kuttner’s prepared statement to police on fourth interview under caution
Mr Kuttner thereafter declined to answer any further questions. Short break
Prosecution Evidence on “top left” tasking
Giving evidence – Operation Weeting Detective DC Oskiewicz
Judge tells jury an 11 am start tomorrow morning, because of legal argument. Prosecution call DC Oskiewitcz to deal with ‘top left’ tasking
The ‘top lefts’ were the names Mulcaire assigned to those who tasked him – mainly news editors like ‘Neville’ and ‘Greg’
Bryant Heron gives way to Laidlaw, counsel for Brooks, “I’m sorry… this will be a couple of hours” on this schedule
Counsel for Rebekah Brooks cross examines Tasking Evidence
Laidlaw wants to separate out the Mulcaire taskings during the period of Rebekah Brooks‘ editorship 2000-2003
Laidlaw for Brooks gives an introduction to the Mulcaire arrest and Operation Caryatid
Laidlaw reiterates there were about 8,000 pieces of paper seized from Mulcaire. Each piece of paper copied separately as pdf
Laidlaw goes over the appearance of Mulcaire taskings – some bound notebooks, incomplete notebooks, some notebooks fallen apart
“Not every page of 8000 or so had to do with ‘taskings’:” agrees DC Weeting Office. Some pages of bank statements etc.
Laidlaw asserts about 2,400 pages of 8k have nothing to do with tasking – 5,600 documents consistent with tasking.
Laidlaw asks more about the police production of what is generally called the ‘Top Left Schedule’ detailing the timeline of taskings
All these top left Mulcaire schedules relate to four individuals who were at one time News Editors at News of the World
Of 5,600 pages of Mulcaire taskings: about 2,200 bore one of the four news editors names.
600 taskings of those cover the period of Rebekah Brooks‘ editorship at News of the World compare to 1600 for Coulson
Two news editors did not join News of the World until Brooks had left in 03, so Laidlaw only concerned with Greg Miskiw & Neville Thurlbeck
Agreed facts or admissions on Miskiw: he started on NOTW in 1987, news editor 1996, assistant editor of news and investig October 2000
“In short Mrs Brooks inherited Mr Miskiw… he continued to work for NOTW after Brooks’ departure,” says Laidlaw for Brooks.
Admissions on Thurlbeck: joined NOTW as freelance 88, reporter 94, investigation news editor October 2000, news editor 2001
Laidlaw makes the same case Brooks inherited Thurlbeck, and that he continued to work for NOTW even when Brooks departed to edit the Sun
2/3rd of Mulcaire taskings from Brooks’ era were for Greg: 400 of the 600. Neville begins to task more consistently later
“One of the matters that came to the attention of my team were duplicate entries,” says Laidlaw of police schedule on Mulcaire taskings
By duplicates Laidlaw means double entries made by Mulcaire, not multiple copies of same document
Some duplicate Mulcaire notes were transfers from unbound paper and into larger notebooks.
Laidlaw says defence team had identified 61 duplicate entries: the police agreed 46 duplicates and set out of reasons.
Laidlaw cites three examples of the 46 duplicate Mulcaire notes
Jury shown entries for David Cook: landline, mobile, postcode, ref to Surrey Police, Rank DCS, and Hendon.
Laidlaw shows almost identity set of records for Dave Cook on another notebook
Same person tasking and the same date for the two Dave Cook entries
Laidlaw shows another e.g. of Mulcaire duplicates: Jacqui Hames – address, DOB, payroll number, national crime faculty, NCIS, Yard, ex hub
FYI: Laidlaw’s first two e.g’s of Mulcaire duplicate taskings happened to have been two police officers – Jacqui Hames and David Cook
Third eg of duplicate brought up by Laidlaw is a court case, around Southwark Crown Court. 19/11/02 Targets, landlines
The target of this Mulcaire duplicate is a barrister, chambers listed, and civil case.
This seems to be an undated Miskiw tasking: there’s a reference to Victoria, Lionel, and ‘confirmation’
The third duplicate Laidlaw has used as an example of one of the 46 duplicate entries seems to be a barrister.
This leaves 554 taskings of Mulcaire during Brook’s editorship of NOTW
Laidlaw wants to know about the additional 3,400 non tasking Mulcaire pages. DC Oskiewicz can’t comment on those.
Laidlaw goes back to the Milly Dowler timelines: there are six taskings that don’t relate to Brooks or Coulson.
Laidlaw goes through the Mulcaire taskings from 1999 before Brooks arrived.
One tasking from 1999 is from ‘Clive’ seems to go to several pages
A 4 page Mulcaire tasking from 1999 appears to be from Greg.
Jonathan Laidlaw QC, counsel for Brooks, points out hat another 1999 Mulcaire entry has one page with Clive and another with Greg
Another Clive tasking for 1999 notes Laidlaw as he painstakingly goes through Mulcaire’s notebooks
Laidlaw speeds up with more Mulcaire taskings prior to Brooks’ arrival.
FYI the third duplicate was about a barrister called Christine Russell
Back after the break with Laidlaw going through the top left schedules of Muclaire during Brooks’ editorship of News of the World
Laidlaw: “A large number of separate pages were stapled together… we saw large examples of that in 1999.”
Laidlaw makes the point that a Mulcaire bundle of 10 pages, 4 pages are taskings.
Laidlaw has amendments for these Mulcaire tasking schedules.
Laidlaw moves out a couple of undated Mulcaire entries from the Brooks period of editorship.
A couple of other Mulcaire taskings Laidlaw suggests should not be in the Brooks timeline
Laidlaw also challenges a Mulcaire entry during Brooks’ period for Sven-Goran Eriksson which seems to be relate to Faria Alam
Having made a small number of corrections, Laidlaw goes through the appearance of the schedule that covers Mulcaire’s timeline
Laidlaw for Brooks suggests there are three mistakes in the phone number schedule.
Laidlaw says 550 Mulcaire taskings from May 2000 till Jan 2003 – the period of Brooks editorship, and asserts 307 have no mobile numbers
Breaking down the schedule was the responsibility of four officers, Laidlaw confirms from Weeting Detective at #hackingtrial
Laidlaw is going through the police methodology for organising the notes: taskers, targets etc.
Laidlaw says that some pages are blagging not hacking.
“We’re concerned at your assessment…. you’re not sure if it’s a blagging or hacking, and might relate to neither” Laidlaw to Weeting DC
Edis objects to Laidlaw’s categorisation of these unsure documents as ‘not hacking’ – they’re just unsure
“I’m dancing on the head of a needle, rather” says Justice Saunders of these distinctions of Mulcaire taskings.
Laidlaw says of Mulcaire taskings during Brooks editorship: 218 dated taskings,106 circumstantially dated,13 undated
Laidlaw goes through the undated taskings – mainly related to NOTW articles that coincided with targets (eg, Andy Gilchirst, John Leslie)
Another NOTW article and associated target related to Peter Foster
Laidlaw brings up a Greg tasking for Charlotte Church – Orange Platform number.
Laidlaw says of nine significant hacking entries in the entire 550 taskings there are no direct dial numbers
Laidlaw claims that a NOTW article on Charlotte Church “Charlotte is on the gravy train” is not related to a Mulcaire tasking
The Mulcaire tasking notes Gatwick and America re NOTW Charlotte Church story and speculation of a split
Laidlaw brings up Peter Foster stories in three NOTW editions (Foster was involved in Cheriegate).
Laidlaw asks if there was anything that connects Mulcaire notes with NOTW: Weeting DC notes an email address which appears in NOTW
Laidlaw goes to another two Peter Foster articles to see if anything on Mulcaire’s notes that tallies beyond email address.
Laidlaw has gone through all the 13 category three (undated) Mulcaire hacks one by one.
Laidlaw for Brooks is now querying the police’s rationale for dating some of the other Mulcaire entries
Laidlaw cites a Mulcaire note doing ‘call analysis’ around Will Young’s telephone – linked to a NOTW article
Some confusion on categories 1/unsure 2/probably a blagging 3/definitely a hacking: Laidlaw establishes 13 in the last category
Laidlaw for Brooks now going through the defence version of the audio tapes recovered Mulcaire’s premises
There are no voicemail recordings recovered from Mulcaire’s premises: Saunders reminds the jury Kuttner claimed he had tapes
Langdale, counsel for Coulson, wants to look at the taskings for when Andy Coulson was editor of NOTW.
Coulson’s counsel wants to establish two particular points about his Mulcaire schedule: overwhelming number of taskings related to Greg
Langdale notes that a very large number of undated Mulcaire taskings relate to Greg.
Court breaks until 11 am tomorrow.

Note: All the defendants deny all the charges. The trial continues.

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Hacking Trial Live Tweets – 12 Dec
Hacking Trial Live Tweets – 13 Dec
Hacking Trial Live Tweets – 17 Dec

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