Leading article: An unhealthy – and corrupt – nexus of interests

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Elizabeth Filkin's inquiry into relations between the police and the press followed claims that the phone-hacking scandal would have been exposed sooner, had it not been for the relationship between Rupert Murdoch's News International and the Metropolitan Police. Sure enough, she found that that relationship compromised – or corrupted, as she put it yesterday – the capacity of both police and press to hold one another to account, as democracy properly requires.

The extent of that corruption is now clearer, as are the remedies – including more openness with information – which the new Met chief has promised to introduce. The problem, though, runs much deeper. There is an unhealthy confluence of interests and opinions among certain officers and editors, and this forms part of a wider nexus of backroom influence that brings together politicians as well as press and police. It will take real will and firm procedures if this is to be rooted out.

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