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No End In Sight For Murdoch-Owned Tabloid's Phone-Hacking Scandal

Reported by Ellen - April 17, 2011 -

I posted last week about a News-Corp.-owned British tabloid's attempt to put scandal behind it by reversing course and admitting liability in the phone hacking of several celebrities, including actress Sienna Miller. At the time, I said it remained to be seen whether fessing up would staunch the damage. A new article in the Guardian indicates that the scandal - and potential damage to Murdoch's paper - is far from over. (H/T Eric J.)

In an article called 91 victims and rising: Met police admits scale of phone hacking, The Guardian reported:

A high court hearing to timetable and organise the growing civil claims for damages against Rupert Murdoch's News International heard that the new police investigation believed the scale of potential victims was much higher than leading officers had previously said.

Previously the Metropolitan police said they had found a total of 91 pin numbers – necessary to access a mobile phone's voicemail – in the possession of the private investigator Glenn Mulcaire (employed by Murdoch's tabloid).

But Jason Beer QC, representing the Met, told the hearing the number of potential victims is "substantially" higher than 91. "It is wrong to say that 91 is the answer, that that is the maximum [number of victims]. It may be on a bigger scale."

The Guardian also reported that one of the lawyers for the hacking victims noted, "The judge entirely rejected (News Corp.'s) contention that their narrow 'admissions' were sufficient to bring all the liability issues in the nine leading cases to an end and ordered a trial of the generic issues, including whether they entered into a conspiracy with Glenn Mulcaire to hack voicemails."

Grab the popcorn!

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