Phone hacking 2 (2014-)

This timeline is under construction. New information is being added in date order as it is found; gaps in the timeline will be filled in over time. 

Check this and re-write: 

Pharo and Pyatt became the last journalists to stand trial for paying public officials after a review by Director of Public Prosecutions Alison Saunders in April.

Saunders dropped nine out of 12 outstanding cases after former News of the World crime reporter Lucy Panton successfully appealed against her conviction.

22 January 2015

After three months of trial, none of the Sun Six journalists had been convicted of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office by allegedly paying officials for stories. Two journalists were cleared and verdicts could not be reached regarding the others, leaving the possibility of another trial. A Press Gazette editorial strongly criticised the wave of unsuccessful prosecutions at great public expense, which included dawn raids and “a search as terrified children look on”.

Footnote: Milton Keynes reporter Sally Murrer had been the first journalist ever to face the new conspiracy charge, in 2008. She was cleared after a judge said that secret recordings of her conversations with a police source could not be used as evidence in her trial. He barrister said her human right to freedom of expression had been breached by the case. Read more

15 October 2015

A jury cleared the last two Sun journalist to be tried for paying public officials for stories as a result of Operation Elveden. News editor Chris Pharo and reporter Jamie Pyatt were found not guilty of aiding and abetting a Surrey police officer to commit misconduct in a public office. The officer had already been jailed. Defence lawyer Nigel Rumfitt QC told the court the case had been a “monumental error of judgment”.

Pharo and Pyatt said it had been a four-year nightmare. “The head has finally been chopped off the Elveden dragon,” Pyatt told reporters. “It’s gone. It should never have been there in the first place.”

In all, 29 journalists had been prosecuted but only one early conviction still stood, and that was being appealed. Read more (Source: PA Mediapoint, in Press Gazette)

29 March 2017

A PR firm set up by Andy Coulson, the editor jailed for phone hacking, had been taken on by the Telegraph group to promote its newspapers “as truthful and authoritative”, reported The Guardian.

 

5 April 2017

Chef Gordon Ramsay and Sir Elton John were among 63 people bringing new phone hacking claims in the High Court against the publisher of The Sun and the defunct News of the World, reported the BBC (no update as at October 2017)

30 June 2017

The Daily Mirror’s publisher estimated in its financial report that it would have to pay out £35.5 million for phone hacking dating back to 2,000 – an £7.5m increase on earlier estimates – partly because of high legal fees. Trinity Mirror said it could cope with the size of the bill for its three national papers. Payouts included £188,250 to footballer Paul Gascoigne and £260,250 to actress Sadie Frost. Source: Press Gazette

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