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Letter alleges News Corp. higher-ups knew about phone hacking

The News Corp. headquarters in Manhattan.

The News Corp. headquarters in Manhattan. Photo Credit: Getty Images

Just as the News Corp. journalism scandal was dying down, a letter released Tuesday alleges that a number of senior execs at the newspaper were fully aware of a culture of rampant hacking at the now-shuttered News of the World.

The claims put new pressure on James Murdoch, who runs News Corp.'s European operations, as they contradict statements he gave to parliament last month saying no top editors knew about the hacking.

Former royal reporter Clive Goodman said the hacking was openly discussed until the then-editor Andy Coulson banned any reference to it, the disgraced journalist wrote in a letter four years ago that sought to appeal his dismissal from the tabloid.

"This practice was widely discussed in the daily editorial conference," the Goodman letter said, published as part of a parliamentary investigation into hacking. "Other members of staff were carrying out the same illegal procedures."

The committee investigating the hacking scandal said Tuesday it would probably recall the younger Murdoch to give further evidence after receiving the Goodman letter and statements from other parties that contradicted his previous testimony.

"I think it is very likely that we will want to put those points to James Murdoch," said committee head John Whittingdale.

(with Reuters) 

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