Rebekah Brooks, the former CEO of Rupert Murdoch’s News International, was arrested Tuesday as part of a Scotland Yard investigation into phone hacking. It is believed that her husband, racehorse trainer and newspaper columnist Charlie Brooks, was also arrested, along with four other suspects on suspicion of obstruction of justice.
This is the second time that Brooks, who once edited both the News of the World and the Sun, has been arrested in connection with the phone-hacking scandal. (She was taken into custody last July on suspicion of phone hacking and police bribery, just after her resignation as CEO of News International.) This is the first time the scandal has ensnared her husband, however, a society figure and old school friend of British Prime Minister David Cameron.
British police said in a statement this morning that the six arrests had occurred between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m. at locations in and outside of London, and that the suspects were being interrogated. Though police did not release names, the arrest of a 49-year-old man and a 43-year-old woman in Oxfordshire soon aroused suspicion that the Brooks were the suspects in question.
As the former impresaria of Rupert Murdoch’s sprawling media empire, Brooks has long been enmeshed in the phone-hacking scandal that has shaken the company’s foundation. She maintains that she was unaware of illegal activities at News International, including phone hacking.
The Brooks once lived a gilded society life, based around their $7 million country estate in Oxfordshire. Since the hacking story broke last summer, however, it has been difficult for the couple to stay out of the news. Just last month, it emerged that the London Metropolitan police had loaned Brooks a retired police horse, and that it had been ridden by Prime Minister Cameron on visits to the Brooks’ estate.
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