Thursday, 31 October 2013

Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson's 'secret six year affair exposed

Former News of the World editors Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson were having a secret affair for at least six years, the Old Bailey heard today.
Police investigating phone hacking in 2011 discovered they had been lovers since 1998 after finding a letter Mrs Brooks wrote to Mr Coulson in February 2004 on her PC. 
Their affair was revealed today at the Old Bailey because it took place at the height of hacking at the News of the World, where she was editor and he was her deputy for the majority of that time.
Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson in September 2004
Andy Coulson leaves the Old Bailey with wife Eloise
Revelation: Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson (left, in September 2004) were having a secret affair for at least six years, the Old Bailey heard today. Coulson is pictured leaving the court today with his wife Eloise (right)
Couple: Rebekah Brooks (right) with her husband Charlie Brooks (left) leaving the Old Bailey in London today
Couple: Rebekah Brooks (right) with her husband Charlie Brooks (left) leaving the Old Bailey in London today



Former Chief Executive of News International, Rebekah Brooks arrives at the Old Bailey
Andy Coulson today
Lovers: Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson arrive at London's Old Bailey for the second day of their trial today


Revelations: Rebekah Brooks, former News International chief executive, arrives for the phone-hacking trial today with her husband Charlie Brooks on the day the court heard she had a secret six-year affair with Andy Coulson
Revelations: Rebekah Brooks, former News International chief executive, arrives for the phone-hacking trial today with her husband Charlie Brooks, on the day the court heard she had a secret six-year affair with Andy Coulson
The note on her computer was Brooks' reaction to Coulson's decision to break-off the romance, the court heard, but it is not known if it was ever sent.
'The fact is you are my very best friend, I tell you everything, I confide in you, I seek your advice, I love you, care about you, worry about you, we laugh and cry together,' Ms Brooks wrote.
 
'In fact without our relationship in my life I am not sure I will cope'.
Andy Coulson married his wife Eloise in 2000 and Brooks married Eastenders star Ross Kemp in 2002, when it was claimed they were having an affair with each other.
In court: From left, Ian Edmondson, Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson look at video evidence and take notes
In court: From left, Ian Edmondson, Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson look at video evidence and take notes
Leaving: Downing Street's former director of communications and News Of The World editor Andy Coulson departs the Old Bailey after denying the charges against him at the phone-hacking conspiracy trial
Leaving: Downing Street's former director of communications and News Of The World editor Andy Coulson departs the Old Bailey after denying the charges against him at the phone-hacking conspiracy trial
Making an exit: Andy Coulson (right) departs the Old Bailey in Central London at the end of the day
Making an exit: Andy Coulson (right) departs the Old Bailey in Central London at the end of the day
Famous: Eastenders star Ross Kemp and Rebekah Wade married in 2002 but later divorced in 2009
Famous: Eastenders star Ross Kemp and Rebekah Wade married in 2002 but later divorced in 2009
The prosecution said the fact they were lovers is important because 'in this period what Mrs Brooks knew, Mr Coulson knew, and what Mr Coulson knew, Mrs Brooks knew', Andrew Edis QC said.'

THE LETTER BROOKS WROTE TO COULSON 'AT END OF AFFAIR'

Rebekah Brooks
A letter from Brooks to Coulson in February 2004 was discovered by police.
Its final paragraphs were read to the Old Bailey today.
‘Finally and the least of our worries, but how do we really work this new relationship? There are a hundred things that have happened since Saturday night that I would normally share with you..some important, most trivial,' she wrote.
‘The fact is you are my very best friend. I tell you everything, I confide in you, I seek your advice, I love you, care about you, worry about you. We laugh and cry together... in fact without our relationship in my life, I am really not sure how I will cope.
‘I'm frightened to be without you... but bearing in mind 'the rules' you will not know how I am doing and visa versa. The thought of finding out anything about you or your life from someone else fills me with absolute dread.
‘Also you said I had to email you if anything important happened… like if I was ill? I don't understand this... we are either there for each other or not surely?
‘But for example, how does this work thing manifest itself. Do we limit contact until we absolutely have to... like leaving our execs to sort run of the mill joint stuff?
‘I don't want to get this wrong. I hope that I've managed to put your mind at rest about Les..and that you two now have a better relationship. On KRM (Keith Rupert Murdoch), well he's not b********g you must not brood on lack of calls.
‘Obviously I can't discuss my worries, concerns, problems at work with you anymore... and visa versa... but I'll assume unless I hear different that we keep our professional relationship to the minimum... and avoid if possible without it being in any way awkward.
‘If it is necessary or more importantly right that we two editors should deal with it, then we will.
‘If either of us feels that we are not striking this balance then we must say...?? Anyway, that really isn't where I am confused. I know what horror it means and I know why we have to stick to it.’
'The point that I'm going to make in relation to that letter is that over the relevant period, what Mr Coulson knew, Mrs Brooks knew too. And what Mrs Brooks knew, Mr Coulson knew too - that's the point,' he went on.
'Because it is clear from that letter that, as of February 2004, they had been having an affair which had lasted at least six years'.
Mr Edis told the court that the pair had been having an affair dating back to around 1998, spanning the period covered by their phone-hacking conspiracy charge.
The court heard that the letter - apparently written by Brooks in response to Coulson trying to end the affair - included a declaration of her love for her colleague.
Mr Edis told jurors he was not revealing the affair to deliberately intrude into their privacy or to make a 'moral judgment'.

The final part of the letter was read to the jury to illustrate just how close Coulson and Brooks had been during their affair.
'There are a hundred things which have happened since Saturday night that I would normally share with you, some are important, most trivial', she wrote.
'The fact is that you are my very best friend, I tell you everything, I confide in you, I seek your advice, I love you, care about you and worry about you.
'Without our relationship in my life, I really don't think I will cope.
'I am fortunate to be with you, but bearing in mind the rules, you will not know how I am doing and vis a vis.'
She wrote that finding out about Coulson's life 'fills me with absolute dread'
Referring to rules of their future relationship Coulson has set out, she wrote: 'Email if there is anything important happens - I don't understand this, we are either there for each other or we are not.
'How will this work for you and manifest itself. Do we limit contact until we absolutely have to?'
She added: 'Obviously I can't discuss my worries, concerns, problems at work with you anymore or vis a vis.
'I assume until I hear otherwise we will keep our professional relationship at a minimum and avoid if possible without being awkward.'
Mr Edis said this shows the close nature of their relationship before the break up, proving Coulson and Brooks must have shared information about phone hacking if one of the other knew about it.
Event: Rebekah Brooks, Charlie Brooks, with Andy Coulson and his wife Eloise at Mayfair cabaret in 2009
Event: Rebekah Brooks, Charlie Brooks, with Andy Coulson and his wife Eloise at Mayfair cabaret in 2009
Evidence: The prosecution presented a letter from February 2004, apparently written after their romance ended, just months before this photo was taken in September that year
Evidence: The prosecution presented a letter from February 2004, apparently written after their romance ended, just months before this photo was taken in September that year
Evidence: The prosecution presented a letter from February 2004, apparently written after their romance ended, just months before this photo was taken in September that year, left, and right in 2007


'Mrs Brooks and Mr Coulson are charged with conspiracy, and when people are charged with conspiracy the first question the jury have to answer is how well did they know each other.
'How much did they trust each other? If they were in this relationship, it mean they trusted each other quite a lot'.
Brooks remained with her head bowed and Coulson looked ahead towards the prosecutor as their affair was revealed to the jury.
The court heard that Brooks went on holiday to Dubai in April 2002, but remained in contact with Coulson while she was away.
Colleagues: Andy Coulson and Rebekah Wade pictured together in 2008 at the Tory party conference, after their alleged affair was over
Colleagues: Andy Coulson and Rebekah Wade pictured together in 2008 at the Tory party conference, after their alleged affair was over
Packed courtroom: Defendants in the dock at London's Old Bailey listening to a recording of Glenn Mulcaire
Packed courtroom: Defendants in the dock at London's Old Bailey listening to a recording of Glenn Mulcaire
Mr Edis said: 'That's why you need to have the full context of their relationship - because while she was away she was in contact with him, we say.
'Of course, what I've told you may mean that they had all sorts of personal reasons for wanting to remain in contact with each other, but we say to you that it's clear from the timing of the contact that it was at least partly work-related.'
The court also heard that Brooks told Eimear Cook, former wife of golfer Colin Montgomerie, that phone hacking was rife in the newspaper industry.
'She said all you needed was a person's mobile phone number and a factory pin and you could listen to their voicemail, and actually gave an example of a story involving Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills,' Mr Edis told the jury.
He said there was indeed evidence that Sir Paul and his then wife had been targets of phone hacking by Mulcaire.
This led to a story in the NotW in June 2002 with the headline Macca Throws Heather's Ring Out Of Hotel Window, he claimed. The defendants deny the charges and the trial continues.

In detail: Barrister Andrew Edis QC opens the case for the prosecution at the court in Central London
In detail: Barrister Andrew Edis QC opens the case for the prosecution at the court in Central London
Husband: Ms Brooks is in the dock with partner Charlie Brooks, who is accused of perverting the course of justice
Husband: Ms Brooks is in the dock with partner Charlie Brooks, who is accused of perverting the course of justice. They married in 2009
 

How Mulcaire 'hacked into phones of David Blunkett's friends and associates to reveal story of his affair'

Claims: The story of Home Secretary David Blunkett's affair was allegedly the result of Mulcaire hacking into the phones of his friends and associates
Claims: The story of Home Secretary David Blunkett's affair was allegedly the result of Mulcaire hacking into the phones of his friends and associates
Prosecutor Mr Edis said the story of Home Secretary David Blunkett's affair was the result of Mulcaire hacking into the phones of his friends and associates.
'His phone was not hacked, the people who were hacked were people he knew. We have a great many records of voicemails he left for people he knew.
'These voicemails resulted in stories being published, they are all in the public domain already. It was big news at the time. On this occasion Mr Coulson became directly and personally involved.
'He went to see Mr Blunkett to tell him the story was going to be run and discussed it with him.
'Mr Blunkett is a careful man and made a recording of what was said. In it Mr Coulson didn't say how he knew about the story but he did say he was absolutely sure it was right.
'We know it came from phone hacking, tapes that prove it were recovered from the safe of the lawyer at News International.’
The court also heard that the News of the World asked Mulcaire to hack Fire Brigade Union leader Andy Gilchrist after firefighters went on strike.
'In the back end of 2002 the Fire Brigade Union union is in dispute with the government and was announcing strike action,' said Mr Edis.
'Strike action in the emergency services is a highly controversial thing and the News of the World and The Sun both had strong editorial lines on it.
'What occurred was that on November 30, 2002 Mr Gilchrist gave a speech to a group of MPs and guests in Manchester, the day after an eight-day strike.
'There's a press release sent out, Mr Gilchrist is aware of press attention, lots of people were following them around but what is laid at the door of the News of the World is that Mr Mulcaire was tasked to hack Mr Gilchrist's phone.
Dispute: The court heard the News of the World asked Mulcaire to hack Fire Brigade Union leader Andy Gilchrist (pictured) after firefighters went on strike
Dispute: The court heard the News of the World asked Mulcaire to hack Fire Brigade Union leader Andy Gilchrist (pictured) after firefighters went on strike
'There's a page of Mr Mulcaire's notes with the name Greg at the top and Andrews Gilchrist's name and his wife's name.
‘Another page with numbers and phone numbers and reference to a pay number. On December 4, 2002 is a hand-written page containing voicemail scripts from people who know Mr Gilchrist.
‘On December 5 there's another call. The News of the World published articles on December 8 and that's as far as it goes. There was further hacking of Mr Gilchrist in 2002.
‘They didn't find a story they found out his favourite restaurant but that's not much use for a story. So they investigated him to find something to go to his disgrace.'
Mr Edis added: 'We know that on January 13, 2013 Mrs Brooks became editor of The Sun and what happened there is of some interest - what she put in the paper about Mr Gilchrist, what her approach to him was.
'January 20, 2003, The Sun runs an article “Fire strike leader is a love cheat” and “Fire Liar”.
'What had happened is that The Sun had come by a story not by phone hacking but by other means which they had paid a lot of money, for which revealed that years earlier Mr Gilchrist had an affair with another female member of the fire brigade and this is what they did with that discovery.
'That demonstrates her (Brook's) agenda about him and that may show more clearly that she was behind the tasking of Mr Mulcaire. By now the phone hacking has been going on for quite a long time.
'She must have been involved in the payments because they are so large, she must have been involved in the Milly Dowler story because of the phone contact while on holiday.
'And then the tasking about something we know she's very interested in - find out something about Mr Gilchrist because if we find it I know how we can use it.'
 

News of the World sent team to hunt for schoolgirl Milly Dowler after listening to her voicemails, Old Bailey hears

Victim: The Old Bailey heard that Brooks and Coulson would have known about the hacking of Milly Dowler's phone
Victim: The Old Bailey heard that Brooks and Coulson would have known about the hacking of Milly Dowler's phone
A team of reporters and photographer were dispatched to hunt for Milly Dowler based on information from the schoolgirl's hacked voicemails, the court heard.
Mulcaire had listened to the messages at the behest of chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck, hearing that a recruitment firm in Telford had rung Miss Dowler.
The tabloid then dispatched its employees to Telford to work on this information, before telling the police what they had learned.
Kuttner and Thurlbeck both then informed Surrey Police that the paper had listen to her private messages, with Thurlbeck pretending they had got hold of them through Miss Dowler's schoolfriends.
Mr Edis told the court: 'They dispatched a team of journalists and photographers to Telford so they could see whether Milly Dowler could be found in Telford.
'They wanted to speak to the recruitment agency to see whether she was at the factory that the telephone had concerned, to see whether they could find Milly Dowler alive.
'If they had done - they didn't, Milly Dowler was of course dead - it would have been quite a story: The News of the World finds the girl that police can't find.
'They committed considerable resources to it, sending a team of people to Telford.'
The court heard the recruitment firm fell foul of a hoax caller pretending to be Milly Dowler, and the lead from the voicemail was not true.
However, Mr Edis said the activity leading up to and the story eventually published based on this information show senior people at the paper were deeply involved.
Glenn Mulcaire has pleaded guilty to phone hacking, it emerged today
Chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck
Murder case: Private investigator Glenn Mulcaire, left, who has admitted intercepting voicemails, was asked by former NotW chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck to listen to Milly's voicemails


Stuart Kuttner had written to the police earlier in the week asking a series of questions about Miss Dowler's disappearance, offering to help in anyway they could.
After the voicemail emerged, Kuttner tried to contact the police on the Saturday before publication with news from the voicemails, promising 'significant information'.
Brooks was on holiday at the time in Dubai, but made a string of phone calls to the news desk with one lasting 38 minutes, the court heard.
Dowler case: Stuart Kuttner rang Surrey Police to promise 'significant information' about the missing schoolgirl based on a hacked voicemail, jury told
Dowler case: Stuart Kuttner tried to contact Surrey Police to promise 'significant information' about the missing schoolgirl based on a hacked voicemail, jury told

Mr Edis said it was likely that Brooks was speaking to Coulson, acting as editor in those calls, and because they were having an affair, it was likely they were sharing information.
'If they weren't talking about work, and weren't exchanging confidences and discussing difficulties, the point of the letter was to show what Coulson knew as editor, Mrs Brooks knew too, because of the kind of relationship they had.'
He continued: 'She met somebody in Dubai while on holiday who remembers that she spent a lot of time on the phone during her holiday.
'On one occasion, she said I've got to go and speak to somebody about the missing Surrey schoolgirl.
'If you accept that evidence, it shows she was interested in the story and shows you something about the phone contact.
'At the time of the 38 minute phone call, while this was going on between Mrs Brooks and the editor's desk at the News of the World, things were hotting up.
'The News of the World was on the hunt for a substantial story.
'Did the editors know, and if they knew they must have known where it comes from - it had come from a phone hacker.'
Mr Edis said the first edition of the paper went to press which included direct quotes from the voicemail message that had been hacked.
The second edition was amended to remove the quotes, and Mr Edis said Brooks spoke to the news desk before each edition went to press.
'It is simply incredible that the editors did not know what was going on in that week', he said.
'There was just too much going on.'
 

Hacking trial jurors hear recording of £100,000-a-year News of the World investigator 'blagging' O2 operator

Evidence: Glenn Mulcaire has pleaded guilty to phone hacking and the jury heard examples of his blagging in court today
Evidence: Glenn Mulcaire has pleaded guilty to phone hacking and the jury heard examples of his blagging in court today
Jurors in the trial of former News of the World editors Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson today heard a recording of the tabloid's £100,000-a-year 'blagger' getting a voicemail password reset by a mobile phone company.
In the brief recording Glenn Mulcaire, who has already pleaded guilty to charges of phone hacking, contacts O2 to ask for a voicemail reset - a method it is alleged could be used to access people's messages.
Brooks and her number two Andy Coulson have been accused of being at the heart of the hacking conspiracy because they 'held the purse strings' at the News of the World, the jury heard.
Prosecutor Andrew Edis QC told the court today: 'He (Mulcaire) gives the woman who works for the company a network password, albatross, which he has got from somewhere.

'He really knows how it works, he knows the right things to say, and he is quite chatty and she doesn't seem at all troubled.'
Continuing his case opening, which started yesterday at the Old Bailey, Mr Edis said other than a few 'taskings' by the News of the World in 1999, the first dated tasking of Mulcaire by the newspaper was January 8, 2001
Yesterday the Old Bailey heard Rebekah Brooks presided over a six-year campaign of phone hacking which targeted politicians, pop stars and royals.
The former News of the World editor and her then deputy Andy Coulson allegedly sanctioned ‘thousands upon thousands’ of voicemail interceptions.
The court heard that illegal phone tapping was so widespread that lieutenants at the now-defunct tabloid even used a special hotline for ‘do-it-yourself hacking’ and targeted rival journalists.
It was also revealed for the first time that three former news editors at the newspaper, Neville Thurlbeck, 52, Greg Miskiw, 63, and James Weatherup, 57, have all pleaded guilty to their part in the hacking plot.
In a ‘pervasive’ phone hacking culture at the paper, the voicemails of members of the Royal Family were intercepted, including Lord Frederick Windsor, son of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent.
Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, former private secretary to Princes William and Harry, was also targeted.
Celebrities who were hacked include Sir Paul McCartney and his then wife Heather Mills, as well as actor Jude Law and his girlfriend at the time, Sienna Miller.
Prosecution opening: Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson watch Andrew Edis QC tell the jury yesterday that the pair knew about phone hacking because they 'held the purse strings' at the News of the World
Prosecution opening: Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson watch Andrew Edis QC tell the jury yesterday that the pair knew about phone hacking because they 'held the purse strings' at the News of the World

First day: From left, Ian Edmondson, Rebekah Brooks, Andy Coulson, Clive Goodman, Cheryl Carter, Charlie Brooks and Mark Hanna listen to the prosecution's opening yesterday afternoon
First day: From left, Ian Edmondson, Rebekah Brooks, Andy Coulson, Clive Goodman, Cheryl Carter, Charlie Brooks and Mark Hanna listen to the prosecution's opening yesterday afternoon

Ian Edmondson
Clive Goodman
Defendants: Former news editor at the News of the World Ian Edmondson (top left), former royal editor Clive Goodman (top right), Brooks's PA Cheryl Carter (bottom left) and managing editor Stuart Kuttner (bottom right)

Cheryl Carter
Stuart Kuttner


Yesterday it emerged for the first time that associates of model Kate Moss, singer Will Young and actress Joanna Lumley were targeted too.
Glenn Mulcaire, the newspaper’s phone hacking specialist, also recorded voicemail messages belonging to the former home secretary David Blunkett and the British nanny Louise Woodward, who was convicted of killing a child in the US in the 1990s.
Mulcaire, 43, who was paid £100,000 a year by the paper to lead the hacking, has also admitted intercepting the murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler’s voicemails.
In an earlier hearing, he admitted three counts of conspiracy to commit phone hacking after police found ‘thousands of thousands of pages’ of notes relating to his victims.
Prosecutor Andrew Edis, QC, said:‘They were responsible for enormous payments made to Mr Mulcaire. They were party to a conspiracy to ensure that was carried out.’
He told the jury they had to decide ‘quite a simple issue: there was phone hacking – who knew?’ 
He went on: ‘The News of the World was a Sunday paper, that means it was published once a week.
‘It wasn’t War and Peace, it wasn’t an enormous document – it was the sort of document, that if editing, you could actually take an interest in the contents without too much trouble.
'The management must have known where some of these stories had come from'.
Former News of the World journalist James Weatherup
Greg Miskiw, former news editor of the News of the World,
Guilty: Former News of the World journalist James Weatherup (left) and his news editor Greg Miskiw (right) have also been accused of breaking the law by intercepting voicemails, the Old Bailey heard



Allegations: Mark Hanna, the former head of security at News International, is accused of conspiring with Mrs Brooks and her husband Charlie to pervert the course of justice
Allegations: Mark Hanna, the former head of security at News International, is accused of conspiring with Mrs Brooks and her husband Charlie to pervert the course of justice
And today Mr Edis said Mulcaire's contract would also have been known about by management.
'It was not hidden from anybody that he was being paid all that money because of course the money has to go through an accounting system, it is budgeted for, it's seen.
'The question is, didn't anybody ever ask, what are we paying this chap for?'
He added: 'So what was it that he was doing? Well, we know that he was a phone hacker and we know that he was a good one, and we know that he was an accomplished blagger.'
Brooks and Coulson are accused of conspiracy to intercept voicemail communications with former head of news Ian Edmondson, 44, and ex-managing editor Stuart Kuttner, 73, between October 2000 and August 2006.
Brooks is also charged with two counts of conspiring with others to commit misconduct in public office. She faces two allegations of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice – one with former PA, Carter.
The second count alleges that Brooks, her husband Charlie and former head of security Hanna conspired together with others to pervert the course of justice by trying to conceal documents, computers and electronic equipment from police.
Coulson and Goodman are accused of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office by paying for a Royal household phone directory. All eight deny the charges.
 

Revealed: The Three emails to News of the World staffer that sparked Scotland Yard hacking probe

Accusation: The court heard about three emails to former news editor of the News of the World Ian Edmondson, about the hacking of phones linked to Tessa Jowell, Lord Frederick Windsor, and an adviser to John Prescott
Accusation: The court heard about three emails to former news editor of the News of the World Ian Edmondson, about the hacking of phones linked to Tessa Jowell, Lord Frederick Windsor, and an adviser to John Prescott

The court heard that the police investigation into phone hacking in 2011 was sparked by the discovery of three emails that News International gave to officers.
The messages were from Glenn Mulcaire to news editor Ian Edmondson, and it is alleged they were about hacking phones linked to Tessa Jowell and David Mills; Lord Frederick Windsor, son of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent; and an adviser to John Prescott.
The first message, on April 20 2006, referred to Jowell and Mills, at a time when Mills had been accused of involvement in bribery linked to former Italian leader Silvio Berlusconi.
It said: 'Substantial traffic both ways, also looks like she's selling up.'
Mr Edis told the jury: 'You're going to have to decide in Mr Edmondson's case what you make of that, whether it can possibly mean anything at all other that 'I've been phone-hacking Tessa, and this is what I've found out'.'
Another message, from April 27 2006, referred to Lord Frederick Windsor, and contained a reference to 'press * and Pin', which prosecutors say was Mulcaire telling Edmondson how to hack a phone.
The third email refered to an adviser to former deputy prime minister Lord Prescott, who was at the centre of a publicity storm because he was accused of having an affair.
Target: The hacking trial today heard how phones linked to Tessa Jowell and husband David Mills (pictured) were repeatedly hacked by Mulcaire and management allegedly knew about it
Target: The hacking trial today heard how phones linked to Tessa Jowell and husband David Mills (pictured) were repeatedly hacked by Mulcaire and management allegedly knew about it

Prosecutors claim that Edmondson must have known that Mulcaire was hacking phones.
Referring to the alleged targeting of MP Ms Jowell and her husband Mr Mills, Mr Edis said: 'We know what Mr Mulcaire was doing, he was phone hacking.
'Look how much contact there is at this time between Mr Edmondson and Mr Mulcaire.
Deputy Prime Minister: Records showed that Mulcaire tried to hack phones linked to Lord Prescott to get details about his affair with his secretary in 2006
Deputy Prime Minister: Records showed that Mulcaire tried to hack phones linked to Lord Prescott to get details about his affair with his secretary in 2006
'Do you think it is likely or even possible that Mr Edmondson did not know what was being done by Mr Mulcaire?
'We know that Edmondson was interested in Tessa Jowell, he was investigating Tessa Jowell, and we know that he was in communication with Mr Mulcaire.
'We know that Mr Mulcaire hacked Tessa Jowell's phone and listened to her messages.'
Mr Edis went on: 'This was an important story.
'It wasn't something that was stuck after the letters page, this was big stuff.'
The prosecutor said it was the editor's duty to ask 'How do I know this information is true?' when stories were going to appear in the newspaper.
'Mr Coulson was editor at this time,' he told the jury.
The jury heard that the newspaper went about trying to get a 'scoop' about Lord Prescott's affair with his secretary Tracey Temple in April 2006.

Mr Edis described a series of phone calls, emails, and phone hacks that he said was Mulcaire trying to get information at the behest of the NotW.
The jury also heard that journalists at the paper, including James Weatherup - who has already pleaded guilty to hacking charges - and Coulson, discussed trying to contact Ms Temple to offer her £100,000 for her story.
Records showed that they then tried to hack the phone of Lord Prescott's special adviser Joan Hammell.
The court was told the NotW hacked journalists from rival paper the Mail on Sunday - Dennis Rice and Sebastian Hamilton - to find out what information they had on the story.
'This was all about finding out how the competition were getting on with the story because, of course, you don't want to be scooped,' Mr Edis said.
'One nice easy cheap way of finding out what they know is to hack their phone so that the competition don't get to steal a march on you.
'In the dog eat dog world of journalism, in a frenzy to get this huge story or try to get something better or at least as good as what everyone else has got, that's what you do, perhaps, if you are Ian Edmondson. You hack the competition.'
Mr Edis said that when the News of the World found out the Mail on Sunday was hoping to run the story, the paper concluded: 'We are going to spoil that by doing our own story.
'We know how they were planning to do the spoiler - it was by hacking other journalists.'
 

Prosecution: Payments to private eye Mulcaire 'proves management knew about hacking'

Claims: Andrew Edis QC said today that management like Rebekah Brooks controlled finances so would have known about payments to hacker Mulcaire
Claims: Andrew Edis QC said today that management like Rebekah Brooks controlled finances so would have known about payments to hacker Mulcaire

Prosecution QC Andrew Edis claimed today that budget cuts at the News of the World during the hacking scandal meant that Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson would have known about payments to 'blagger' Glenn Mulcaire.
The Old Bailey also heard that the 'pressure' from the top to find exclusive stories for the Sunday tabloid forced journalists to 'stray into crime'.
Mr Edis told jurors: 'You're going to have to form a view about how much pressure there was on journalists at the NotW to get stories, so that they strayed sometimes into crime in order to do it.
'And also how much the editor was involved in the whole process.'
The newspaper had a successful year in 2004, but management were not happy with the performance in 2005, the court heard.
Jurors were read an email from Kuttner to Miskiw in September 2000, warning him that he was 43% overspent nine weeks into the financial year.
Messages were sent to senior staff in June 2001, saying they would have to get 'formal approval from the editor for spending outside their limits'.
They were warned that there would be 'the most severe consequences' if they exceeded their budgets.
Mr Edis said that Brooks, Kuttner and Coulson were working together to rein in spending.
He said: 'We can see the three of them operating as a management team, trying to keep these groups of journalists within budget.'
Brooks' instructions about controlling spending were reiterated that month, and she wrote to Miskiw and former chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck telling them that any payments over £1,000 would have to be authorised by herself, Kuttner or Coulson.
Mr Edis told the court that Kuttner warned them he would be 'unavoidably tough', saying: 'The palmy days of indulgence are over.'
The prosecutor told the court: 'That's the point which we say generates the inference that they must have known what was going on with Mr Mulcaire.
'What on earth do they think they are doing if they did not know? The money was going out of the paper. Where was it going? Did they care? Well, yes, they did.'
The court heard that in August 2001, when rules about how regular contributors were paid changed, Mulcaire was a 'major exception'.
Mr Edis said: 'If people knew that Mr Mulcaire was committing crimes on behalf of the NotW or engaged in unacceptable activity on behalf of the NotW, then they would quickly understand that he had to be deniable.'
Jurors were told that Kuttner authorised 221 separate payments totalling £413, 527 to Mulcaire 'over the years', amounting to 72 per cent of what Mulcaire earned during that time.

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