Accusations of Phone Hacking against UK Newspaper The People

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A former reporter for the UK newspaper The People accused his newspaper of hacking phones, the UK Telegraph reported.

The People
is owned by Trinity Mirror, the parent company for the Daily Mirror and several other newspapers.  Trinity Mirror announced in July that it was conducting a review of its “editorial practices” after the Daily Mirror was accused of phone hacking.

According to the Telegraph, the reporter, David Brown, stated in 2007 during a “witness statement” that

 “A number of the methods used to pry into individuals’ lives were illegal and I have little doubt that if these people knew they had been spied upon, they would take legal action for breach of their right to privacy.”

He noted that he reported from information from phone hacking and “tapping.”  In one case, the newspaper “quickly published an apology” for a story based on voicemails to a nanny for David Beckham.

Sky reported that “Most damning of all,” Brown alleged that People “executives” were advised “to deny phone-hacking if they were asked about it.”

According to the Telegraph, The People fired Brown five years ago “for gross misconduct in relation to allegedly paying for stories due to be published in its sister title the Daily Mirror.” He filed a lawsuit for being fired, which is when he made the hacking accusations. Trinity Mirror and Brown “settled out of court,” so his accusations never gained traction, the Telegraph explained.

A Trinity Mirror spokesperson is quoted as saying Brown’s claims are  “unsubstantiated allegations. All our journalists work within the criminal law and the Press Complaints Commission’s Code of Conduct. We have seen no evidence to suggest otherwise.”

The Guardian added that Trinity Mirror claimed Brown’s claims “taken from a draft statement that was never tested under cross-examination, made by an aggrieved employee who had been dismissed.” Read more here about Trinity Mirror’s settlement with Brown and the company’s denial of phone hacking.

iMediaEthics wrote in July when questions were raised over potential hacking at Trinity Mirror-owned the Daily Mirror. Piers Morgan, a former editor of the Mirror and current CNN employee, denied hacking.  Former Mirror reporter James Hipwell, who worked at the newspaper when Morgan was in charge, also claimed that hacking was “endemic” at the newspaper.  Trinity Mirror rejected Hipwell’s claims.  Paul McCartney and his ex-wife Heather Mills also have accused the peoplethe Mirror of hacking their phones years ago.

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Accusations of Phone Hacking against UK Newspaper The People

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