How Much Did Rebekah Brooks know about the Daniel Morgan Murder

Opening segment Crossposted from Byline – do chip in and support my column on the criminal media nexus there if you can

Rebekah Brooks worked at News of the World for all but two years from 1989 to 2003. How much did she know know Southern Investigations and police inquiries into their role in the murder of Daniel Morgan?

We can all make mistakes.

In my last piece I erroneously said there was only one mention of the Daniel Morgan murder in the News of the World. In 1989, soon after the CPS dropped charges  against him in a second murder investigation, the Sunday tabloid published an interview with Jonathan Rees, Daniel’s former partner.

The interviewer, News of the World’s crime editor Alex Marunchak, failed  to mention that he had by then formed a successful business relationship with Rees and his private detective agency, Southern Investigations.

Fast forward eleven years, and there’s one more mention of Daniel on April 16 2000 . Continue reading

How the Guardian was Got At but the News of the World Got Away With It

Crossposted from Byline – the No 1 Journalist Crowdfunding site. Please chip in to support my work there.
15 years ago the Met’s Operation Two Bridges exposed a lucrative illegal trade between corrupt police officers, private investigators and Fleet Street. Nothing was done. But what happened to two Guardian journalists who were writing about police corruption at the same time?

As Joe Public has revealed on Bellingcat, ‘How The Metropolitan Police Covered-Up For Rupert Murdoch’s News International’ senior Metropolitan police officers knew back in 1999 that there was a phenomenal trade in illegal information atNews of the World which predated phone hacking.

A secret probe in the premises of Southern Investigations, ostensibly part of a third inquiry into the murder of former founder Daniel Morgan, caught many connections between the corrupt detective agency and senior Fleet Street journalists. Continue reading

UPDATED@ Alastair Morgan to @RupertMurdoch “You are in a unique position to help us finally lay Daniel to rest.”

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With considerable speed and grace, on Monday 16 March, Rupert Murdoch replied to Alastair’s letter, promising to co-operate with the Daniel Morgan Independent Panel inquiry, and explaining how News Corp’s Management and Standards Committee have already complied with requests from the police and the IPCC.

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Questions about the role of News of the World and surveillance of chief investigating officer and his family were part of James Murdoch’s formal written submission to the Leveson Inquiry

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My original blog on the letter is below. 

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Beyond Contempt Reprint: with new Martin Rowson Cover

 

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Some news from my Publisher, Martin Hickman at Canbury Press; Peter’s book. We did it!.

Some splendid news about Peter Jukes‘ gripping account of the phone hacking trial: we’ve taken delivery of a reprint.

When we published Beyond Contempt in the autumn, it was frankly a little risky – legally and commercially. Thankfully, hundreds of you who followed Peter’s tweets responded positively. Waterstones has been great too.

So, what’s new in the new edition? Well, we’ve torn through the book and had the text professionally typeset, redesigned the pages, and hunted down a few more typos and blitherings.

A little mischievously, we’ve also commissioned an illustration by Martin Rowson of Rebekah Brooks as Justice. It’s on the cover (right).

Get you copy from www.hackingtrial.com

Mulcaire, Miskiw, Mahmood and the Special Investigations Unit set up by Rebekah Brooks at News of the World

Before Panorama airs at 7.30 tonight, after two delays, it might be worth looking at the background of MazHer Mahmood, aka the Fake Sheikh, at News of the World under the editorship of Rebekah Brooks, from early 2000 to early 2003.

Mahmood’s activities in the decade leading up to this have been covered in  a previous post about his connections with Southern Investigations. But the problems with that notorious private investigations firm, due to police inquiries and arrests of key personnel around this time, may explain what happened next.

Investigations were taken in house.

One of the first things Brooks did as editor of Britain’s best selling paper was to recall Greg Miskiw from New York, where he had set up office, and form an Investigations Team that worked outside both the Features and News Desk. From various bits of evidence show the floating membership from 2000 onwards to consist of:

Greg Miskiw – head
Neville Thurlbeck – reporter
Sarah Arnold – reporter
Paul McMullan – reporter
Glenn Mulcaire (as reported by Geoff Sweet in the sports pages)
Mazher Mahmood – undercover reporter
Bradley Page – photographer who replaced his father in law Steve Grayson
Conrad Brown – technical and surveillance

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Mr Justice Saunders’ Sentencing remarks on Ian Edmondson

It’s been a busy week in events connected to the hacking trial. As previous posts here have tried to explain there has been new evidence about Rebekah Brooks’ authorisation of cash payments from the trial of six Sun journalists at Kingston Crown Court; and two ongoing trials at the Old Bailey. The jury returned a guilty verdict for one News of the World journalist for ‘conspiracy to commit misconduct in public officer’ for paying a prison officer for stories about Jon Venables. This journalist cannot be named for legal reasons.

Meanwhile, the famous News of the World ‘fake sheikh’, Mazher Mahmood, lost a high court battle to prevent his image being broadcast in a BBC 1 Panorama documentary about his activity  this coming Monday at 8.30 pm  – various blog posts, here, here and here about Mr Mr Mahmood. And then today we had the sentencing of the fourth news desk editor Ian Edmondson for Phone hacking at the main hacking trial. Mr Justice Saunders remarks are reprinted below in full

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More dark arts at the News of the World? Panorama investigate the Fake Sheikh

This is worth definitely curling up at home with the TV, or setting your goggle box to record. As documented by a guest blogger here and on Bellingcat, the News of the World’s foremost investigative reporter may have a lot of questions to answer after the BBC air this documentary next Monday, fronted by the irrepressible John Sweeney, and produced by the inestimable Meirion Jones. Links to other Fothom pieces below the quote

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