News of the World's hacker told to reveal names of paymasters

 

The names of the News of the World executives who told the private investigator Glenn Mulcaire to hack the mobile phones of prominent figures are due to be revealed next week, as a result of legal action taken by the comedian and actor Steve Coogan.

Mulcaire has lost an appeal against a court order secured by Coogan that requires him to name the newspaper figures who told him to listen to the voicemails of the model Elle MacPherson and five other people, including Simon Hughes MP, deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats.

Coogan's lawyers believe that the release of the names will demonstrate that there was widespread knowledge and authorisation of phone hacking among the defunct Sunday newspaper's senior figures.

In a separate development yesterday, the former News of the World feature writer Dan Evans, 35, was arrested and held for questioning on suspicion of conspiring to intercept voicemails. Evans, who was suspended by the paper in April last year, was bailed until October.

Evans was suspended by the paper after the interior designer Kelly Hoppen, who is stepmother to actress Sienna Miller, brought a damages claim alleging that he tried to hack into her voicemails in June 2009. The Sunday tabloid and lawyers for the journalist have said no evidence was found to support Ms Hoppen's claims. It is thought that Scotland Yard arrested the writer over separate phone-hacking allegations.

Mulcaire, who was jailed in 2007 after pleading guilty to hacking the phones of members of the royal household for the NOTW, must now also reveal who authorised the hacking of phones belonging to Max Clifford, the celebrity PR guru, the football agent Sky Andrew, Gordon Taylor, head of the Professional Footballers' Association and Jo Armstrong, a legal adviser to the body.

Mulcaire challenged a February court order instructing him to release the names. It has just emerged that Lord Justice Toulson declined to give Mulcaire leave to appeal the order in a ruling earlier this month.

Mulcaire is also resisting a separate order to identify the executive who told him to access Coogan's phone. But the investigator's stance may have changed as he is now suing News International over unpaid legal fees in respect of the civil cases in which he is a defendant. The company had paid Mulcaire £246,000 in fees but the payments were halted last month.

Coogan said: "I remain frustrated by Mr Mulcaire's refusal to answer questions about who authorised him to unlawfully access my voicemail messages and will continue to press for these answers."

Mulcaire, who in 2006 pleaded guilty to hacking five of the six individuals named in the order, must give details by the end of next week of who commissioned the hacking and to whom he passed the information he obtained.

His evidence could prompt police to question other former NOTW journalists. Police have arrested 14 people, including James Desborough, the paper's US editor, held this week. The information revealed by Mulcaire will be of interest to Mr Hughes, who plans to sue News International and was expected to seek a court order forcing Mulcaire to reveal who asked him to intercept his messages.

Mr Taylor signed a gagging order after agreeing a £700,000 payment to settle his breach of privacy claim against News International.

Detective arrested

* A Scotland Yard detective has been arrested and suspended by his own force over leaks during the Operation Weeting phone-hacking investigation. The arrest of the 51-year-old man follows a series of stories that appeared in The Guardian.

It has been alleged that the paper's website reported the arrest of James Desborough, the News of the World's former US editor, before it took place.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Sue Akers, who is in charge of Operation Weeting, said: "I made it very clear when I took on this investigation the need for operational and information security. It is hugely disappointing that this may not have been adhered to.

"The MPS takes the unauthorised disclosure of information extremely seriously and has acted swiftly."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine