Hacking trial: Andy Coulson 'did not cover anything up' after Clive Goodman arrest

Mr Coulson also denied ordering Clive Goodman to plead guilty in 2006

Political Corrrespondent

Andy Coulson denied he ordered the News of the World’s former royal editor to plead guilty during the 2006 expose of phone hacking and claimed it was “shocking” that police ended up on the newsroom floor, the hacking trial at the Old Bailey has heard.

Mr Coulson, the former editor of the now-closed News International tabloid, also denied he was involved in a cover-up that sought to limit the damage from phone hacking to Rupert Murdoch’s  UK print company

On the fifth day of defence evidence, Mr Coulson said that although he did not “volunteer information” to Scotland Yard after the arrest of royal editor Clive Goodman and the paper’s regularly commissioned private investigator, Glenn Mulcaire, he said that had not put barriers in the way of the police investigation.

“I did not cover up anything” Mr Coulson told the jury, adding that he took the view that “the police should go where the police should go.”

Read more: Affair with Rebekah Brooks ‘was wrong
Coulson denies he was played Daniel Craig’s
Andy Coulson denies role in hacking Milly Dowler's phone

His decision not to “volunteer” information was, he said, because did not want to make the situation “worse”, the jury was told.

Mr Coulson, 46, who later headed David Cameron’s communications office in Downing Street, told the court he called Rupert Murdoch, the global boss of News Corporation, to tell him of Goodman's arrest.

Mr Coulson said that as details of the Goodman arrest emerged he spoke to a News International lawyer about the charges. “Nobody knew voicemail interception was illegal and I remember him explaining that.”  He said his understanding  from that time, was that the legislation that was there “to help catch terrorists.”

Questioned by his defence counsel, Timothy Langdale QC, Mr Coulson was asked if he had launched an internal investigation inside the NOTW to find out further details about hacking. He told the court “ Rightly or wrongly, I thought that was not for me to do. That was for the police to handle.”

The jury has previously heard that both Goodman and Mulcaire were jailed in 2007 on hacking-related charges. Mulcaire has pleaded guilty to further hacking charges earlier in the trial's proceedings.

Mr Coulson is one of seven defendants in the hacking trial. They deny all the charges against them.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooksNow available in paperback
Life and Style
The 67P/CG comet as seen from the Philae lander
scienceThe most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Arts and Entertainment
Ian McKellen as Gandalf in The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Koenig, creator of popular podcast Serial, which is to be broadcast by the BBC
tvReview: The secret to the programme's success is that it allows its audience to play detective
Ruby Wax has previously written about her mental health problems in her book Sane New World
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas