Scandal across the pond in Murdoch's empire

The accusations are flying in London. More than 30 journalists at UK tabloids owned by Rupert Murdoch, as well as additional reporters at non-News Corp. pubs, were...

The accusations are flying in London. More than 30 journalists at UK tabloids owned by Rupert Murdoch, as well as additional reporters at non-News Corp. pubs, were accused of hacking into the cell phones of public figures, including government officials, in what is known (in an appropriately perfect Britishism) as blagging.

Blagging is an unlawful way of obtaining private information whereby the person lies to retrieve what they need.

According to The Wall Street Journal:
The Information Commission's Office -- an independent agency that cooperates with the Department of Justice -- has been working for several years to highlight what it describes as "the widespread media involvement in illegally obtaining personal information."

The alleged hacking took place years earlier but a report from The Guardian that said the Murdoch empire had paid off some of those involved in order to settle the cases, has prompted a fresh round of name calling, and a headache for Andy Coulson, the chief communications officer for David Cameron, leader of the UK's Conservative Party. Bloomberg reports:
Coulson resigned as editor of News of the World in 2007 after reporter Clive Goodman was jailed along with private investigator Glenn Mulcaire for intercepting phone messages left for members of Prince Charles’ staff and of Gordon Taylor, chief executive officer of the Professional Footballers Association. Coulson at the time denied any knowledge of Goodman’s actions, which the newspaper portrayed as an isolated incident.

The Guardian report did not name any sources, and Murdoch has denied the payoffs.

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