“I think that there's no doubt about the seriousness of the problem we’ve got. We have a cancer within - close to the presidency, that’s growing. It’s growing daily. It’s compounding. It grows geometrically now, because it compounds itself.”
I didn’t write about it at the time because the day-job was keeping me busy, and also, it was so obviously true. It wasn’t ever the News Of The World scandal, or the Andy Coulson, Lee Hinton scandal, nor even the Rebeka Brooks scandal. It’s always been the Rupert Murdoch scandal.
It was under Brooks that the News hacked the voice-mail of murdered schoolgirl, Milly Dowler. That fact was apparently unknown to the police at the time, but Brooks had been called to a meeting with Scotland Yard, where according to the Guardian, she was informed,
Brooks was summoned to a meeting at Scotland Yard where she was told that one of her most senior journalists, Alex Marunchak, had apparently agreed to use photographers and vans leased to the paper to run surveillance on behalf of Jonathan Rees and Sid Fillery, two private investigators who were suspected of murdering another investigator, Daniel Morgan, when the latter was a partner of Rees’s in the firm Southern Investigations. The Yard saw this as a possible attempt to pervert the course of justice.
Brooks was also told of evidence that Marunchak had a corrupt relationship with Rees, who had been earning up to £150,000 a year selling confidential data to the News of the World. Police told her that a former employee of Rees had given them a statement alleging that some of these payments were diverted to Marunchak, who had been able to pay off his credit card and pay his child’s private school fees.
After her stint as editor of the News, she became the Sun’s first female-editor, and two years ago was promoted to running Murdoch’s entire UK news business.
She became a favourite of Rupert, who put his arm around her and told reporters she was his top priority when he flew into London a week ago to take charge of the crisis shaking his global media empire News Corp .
The notion that he would be unaware of that, and later the hacking and the surveillance of the police themselves, is, as the president of Geritol (played by Martin Scorcese) in the perfect movie Quiz Show, says, “insulting.”
“That’s the kind of business-man I am.”