The UK News newspaper The Sun now can be and is being sued for phone hacking, the Press Gazette reported last week.
Former British Olympic Association chief Simon Clegg, former Liverpool Football Club communications director Ian Cotton, former band manager James Mullard and entertainer Les Dennis are the four people who Justice Mann said could go ahead with suing The Sun, according to the Press Gazette and the Liverpool Echo.
“At the heart of [the Sun’s publisher News Group Newspapers’] case is that the two publications were two different newspapers, which were separately run and did not share journalistic resources,” the Daily Mail reported. The Sun declined to comment to iMediaEthics.
A lawyer for phone hacking victims, Chris Hutchings, told the BBC:
“Today’s ruling brings the Sun squarely into the civil litigation being brought against News Group.”
“The court has now allowed claimants, for the first time, to include claims of phone hacking by the newspaper.
“The decision will also affect up to 50 further cases which are about to be commenced against the Defendant and will widen the disclosure of documentation it will have to provide going forward.”
The Sun‘s parent company News UK has settled 1,100-plus hacking lawsuits so far, the Press Gazette reminded.
IMediaEthics has written to Hutchings for comment.
Rebekah Brooks, CEO of News UK — then known as News International — quit in 2011 but was re-hired as chief executive last year after being found not guilty of hacking, conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office, and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, as iMediaEthics wrote at the time. Andy Coulson, a former News of the World editor and former communications chief for prime minister David Cameron, was found guilty of phone hacking in the same 2014 trial that cleared Brooks.
Read all of iMediaEthics’ stories on the phone hacking scandal.