Private Eye logo
twitter
twitter
rss
rss
rss
rss
gnitty
street of shame
From the Eye archives
Phone Hacking At The screws
Issue 1245, 15th September 2009
murdoch.jpg
The Dirty Digger, whose executives knew nothing about systematic phone hacking

‘Injunctive proceedings’
Lewis told MPs that News International had now threatened injunctions to stop him acting for other clients who want to sue over voicemail hacking – including PR man Max Clifford, whose phone was hacked by private investigator Glenn “Trigger” Mulcaire. He gave the committee a copy of a letter, dated 11 August, from Julian Pike of Farrer & Co, the Dirty Digger’s solicitors.

“We refute [sic] any suggestion that you are able to act for Mr Clifford either now or in the future or any other would-be claimant in respect of voicemail accessing allegations… You personally were party to confidential information… which you are obliged not to disclose. Were you to act for any other would-be claimant in respect of the voicemail accessing allegations, at the very least there is an undoubted risk that the confidential information would be put to use… It goes without saying that our client will object to your involvement in this or any other related case as against our client for the reasons set out above. We reserve our client’s rights to take injunctive proceedings against you should you choose to disregard the matters contained in this letter.”

Just one rogue reporter…
When Lewis was asked by the committee what he understood this letter to be saying, he replied: "You know too much. Don’t act against us or we will bring the whole weight of the organisation against you.” The chairman asked Lewis on what possible legal basis NI could injunct him. “On the basis that I won,” he said, “and my client got a lot of money.”

All this is very odd in light of the repeated assertions by Murdoch executives that they had nothing to do with systematic phone hacking, which was all the work of just one rogue reporter and an overactive private investigator. Why so jumpy?

More top stories in the latest issue:

TELEGRAPH TIMELINE
Inside story on the meltdown and malice at the Daily Telegraph after the resignation of chief political commentator, Peter Oborne.

HOLLOW THUNDER
Commercial and editorial interests must always be kept apart, the Times thunders. Er, but not when covering Rupert Murdoch’s interests.

FRIENDS REUNITED
No JobcentrePlus interview for Rebekah Brooks, who’s joining the online world with a new full-time job from old chum Rupert Murdoch.

OFF WITH SUN STROKE
Why Times media editor Alex Spence’s scoop about the Sun dropping topless Page 3 girls has done him no favours at all at News UK.

COX COINS IT
When the Sun blasts fatcat MPs with two jobs, the top Tory earner turns out to be one Geoffrey Cox QC – who’s representing the paper’s deputy editor!

RUSBRIDGER MEMORIAL SHED
The Guardian buys an extremely large shed in central London which it aims to turn into a civic space to rival the Southbank. No, really.

MAIL SUCCESSION
Class war looms as those backing two big rivals for Paul Dacre’s job, Tony Gallagher and Geordie Greig, style themselves ‘Cavaliers and Roundheads’.

private eye issue 1387
To read more from issue 1245 you can order a copy from our archive of back issues here.
gnitty
More From This Issue
Mediaballs
All the latest gaffes
more »
Mediaballs
Number
Crunching
more »
Number
Crossword
Win a £100 prize
more »
Crossword
Also Available Online
More From This Issue
Private Eye Issue 1387
private eye Only In The Magazine

Was Ernst Blofeld Radicalised by MI6?... The Jihadi John I Knew – by Everyone… Santa to Move Christmas for 2022… Social Care Scandal as Elderly Lady Has Fall… Me and My Spoon, with Green Party leader Natalie Bennett… Greece: Brussels Hails Historic Agreement to Pretend it has an Historic Agreement… Will Hutton: The Overstate We’re In, as told to Craig Brown

And also...

- Radio silence: The other big media group that sat on the tax avoidance story
- Leak stew: Fixers and shady sheikhs emerge from the HSBC shadows
- Telegraph timeline: Inside story of the once-great paper’s fall from grace
For all these stories you can buy the magazine or subscribe here and get delivery direct to your home every fortnight.
Next issue on sale: 17th March 2015.

Private Eye Issue 1386
gnitty