Neil Wallis cleared of phone hacking

Neil Wallis, the former deputy editor of the News of the World, has been cleared of conspiring to illegally intercept voicemail messages.

Neil Wallis: Was cleared at the Old Bailey (credit: Mark Thomas/REX_Shutterstock)
Neil Wallis: Was cleared at the Old Bailey (credit: Mark Thomas/REX_Shutterstock)
A jury found Wallis not guilty of presiding over phone hacking by journalists of celebrities and politicians after a three-week trial at the Old Bailey.

The jury accepted Wallis’ evidence that he was unaware of phone hacking happening at the defunct tabloid and that his colleagues had hidden it from him because he was a "stickler" for the rules.

Following his acquittal today, Wallis tweeted his thanks to people who had supported him. 

Wallis was arrested in a dawn raid by the Metropolitan Police in July 2011 as part of Operation Weeting at the height of the phone hacking scandal. He was charged with involvement in phone hacking.

He left the News of the World two years before it emerged that journalists at the paper had hacked the phone of murdered teenager Milly Dowler, revelations that led to it being closed down.

After leaving journalism, Wallis worked for Outside Organisation and became managing director of the agency.

His own company, Chamy Media, provided strategic advice to the Met’s former commissioner, Lord Stevens.

Wallis was deputy editor to Andy Coulson, who was jailed for 18 months last July for conspiring to hack phones, while Coulson's predecessor, Rebekah Brooks, was cleared of all charges relating to phone hacking.

Wallis was charged with involvement in phone hacking just weeks after Coulson's conviction. 

The news of Wallis’ acquittal follows the recent collapse of a string of high-profile cases against journalists under operation Elveden, which looked into bribery of public officials.

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