British Tabloid Suspends Editor Over Alleged Sienna Miller Phone-Hacking

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REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

What’s more surprising? That the News of the World may have hacked into Sienna Miller’s phone, or that anyone would actually want to listen?

The phone-hacking scandal experienced renewed attention on Jan. 6 when News of the World (NoW) announced it had suspended Ian Edmundson, a news editor, over allegations of hacking the actress’s phone. According to the Guardian, Edmundson was suspended  after the newspaper obtained court documents which show he had approved the hacking of phones belonging to Miller and her staff in 2005 by Glenn Mulcaire, a private investigator. The documents also suggest a degree of collusion between NoW and the police: authorities chose not to interview any executives at the tabloid during their investigation that resulted in 2007 imprisonment of Mulcaire and Clive Goodman, the tabloid’s royal editor.

(More on Time.Com: Read about the News of the World ‘Nazi-style’ sex scandal.)

“A serious allegation has been made about the conduct of a member of the News of the World staff,” the tabloid said in a statement. “We have followed our internal procedures and we can confirm that this person was suspended from active duties just before Christmas. The allegation is the subject of litigation and our internal investigation will take place in tandem with that. If the conclusion of the investigation or the litigation is that the allegation is proven, appropriate action will be taken.”

Mark Thomson, a partner at London law firm Atkins Thomson, sent NewsFeed the following e-mail: “I act for Sienna Miller and confirm that proceedings have been issued against the publishers of the News of the World and Glenn Mulcaire. I cannot make any further comment for legal reasons.”

(More on Time.Com: How Sienna Miller’s shoes are helping fight pneumonia.)

The alleged hacking took place while Andy Coulson, now Prime Minister David Cameron’s director of communications, was the tabloid’s editor. That partly explains why leading Labour politicians have been so vehement in their support for an independent review of Miller’s case. “There is a very long fuse on this and I believe the very long fuse does lead to Andy Coulson,” Alan Johnson, Britain’s former home secretary, said on Thursday.

Miller, Jude Law’s ex, is no stranger to invasions of privacy. In November 2008, News Group, a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch’s News International, paid Miller £35,000 in an out-of-court settlement over a series of articles and photographs published in the News of the World and the Sun. Those articles included coverage of Miller’s alleged relationship with Balthazar Getty. (via the Daily Mail)

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