Ex-Met chief Ali Dizaei may be hacking victim

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The Independent Online

Former Scotland Yard commander Ali Dizaei said he was "shocked and appalled" today after detectives told him his police phone may have been hacked by the News of the World.

Mr Dizaei said officers leading the long-running investigation confirmed a number he used for police borough duties in 2006 may have been targeted.

The 48-year-old was recently released from prison and will face a retrial over claims that he framed Waad al-Baghdadi after a row in a London street.

Mr Dizaei, whose legal team was contacted by officers on Friday, "appears certain" to launch legal action, his solicitor said.

Mr Dizaei added: "I am shocked, appalled and very disappointed that this was not highlighted earlier.

"This could be the first time that it has been confirmed that a police phone may have been hacked by the News of the World.

"At the time I was a legal adviser to the National Black Police Association. I was giving confidential information. Communication interceptions are very unlawful."

A statement from Mr Dizaei's solicitor, Farooq Bajwa, added: "Dr Dizaei's lawyers have asked for a meeting with the Metropolitan Police to see the evidence but it appears certain that Mr Dizaei will now commence legal action.

"Mr Dizaei's legal team are calling for a full public inquiry to be held following the end of the civil and criminal proceedings to ensure that the full facts of these cases be made known."

Three journalists at the paper have been arrested since the Metropolitan Police reopened their inquiry into claims that staff hacked into the answerphone messages of celebrities and politicians.

It has been estimated that News International has set aside £20 million for payouts.

Scotland Yard has endured repeated criticism over its handling of the original phone-hacking inquiry, which led to the conviction of News of the World royal editor Clive Goodman and private investigator Glenn Mulcaire in 2007.

The paper's former editor, Andy Coulson, resigned as Prime Minister David Cameron's director of communications in January as he admitted that the ongoing row about the affair was making his job impossible.

Days later the Met launched a fresh investigation, codenamed Weeting, after receiving "significant new information" from News International.