tv CNN Newsroom CNN July 19, 2011 8:00am-10:00am PDT
5million, 10 million? >> those are -- >> those are certainly confidential. >> is there anything -- any confidentiality in their payoff that they're not supposed to speak about what happened or what their time at your company and what they know? any clauses like that? >> mr. davis, the -- a settlement or compromise agreement when somebody resigns or leaves the business in circumstances like this, you know, there are some -- there are commercial confidentiality agreements, but nothing that would stop or inhibit the executive from cooperating fully with investigations, from being transparent about any wrongdoing or anything like that. it's important to note that in these agreements, they're made on the basis of no evidence of i am propriety. if evidence of impropriety
emerges, or was there prior to that departure, you would have a different piece. but there's quite a -- that's an important point just to be clear about. >> my final question is it seems to me on the face of it that the news of the world was sacrificed in order to try to protect rebekah brooks' position at news international. in effect, rather than her being -- having her departure being announced, "the news of the world" was offered up as an alternative to try to deal with the whole thing. do you regret now making that decision? do you regret closing "the news of the world" to try and save rebekah brooks? in hindsight, do you wish you accepted her resignation to start with in order that that paper with a fine tradition could probably continue and all of the people who are now out of work could still be in work? >> i regret very much the pain of people that will not be able
to find work. the two decisions were totally unrelated, absolutely sxl totally unrelated. >> so when you came into the uk and said your priority for rebekah brooks -- >> i'm not sure i said that. i was quoted as saying that. i had about 20 microphones stuck in my mouth, so i'm not sure what i said. >> you were misquoted? >> i'm not saying that. i just don't remember. >> i think it's important -- i'm sorry, mr. chairman. >> yes. >> mr. davis, it's important to know the closure of a newspaper with a his 160-some odd years is something that is a grave thing and something that is a serious matter of regret for us, for the company. but much more serious than that is the seriousness of really the violation of privacy, the hurt that certain individuals at "the news of the world" caused to the victims of illegal voice mail
interceptions and their families and really -- i can tell you, you know, i advocated at the time that this was a step we should take. this was a paper and a title that had fundamentally violated the trust of its readers. it's something that was a matter of great regret, real gravity, but under the circumstances and with respect to the -- i believe the bad things that certain of the things that happened at t"te news of the world" some years ago did, it was really the right choice for the paper to cease publication. now, it is important to note and i want to be clear with the committee on this that the committee is doing everything it can to make sure that journalists and staff at "the news of the world" who had nothing to do with any of these issues, who are completely blameless in any of these things and many are, you know, really
done tremendous work journalistically, professionally, commercially for the business that we find reemployment for them wherever we can, and i think the company is being as generous as we can under the circumstances. the company is being as thoughtful and compassionate for them and their families to get through this. but it is a very regrettable situation, and one that we did not take lightly in any way. >> you have made that clear. i'm going to ask for members -- i don't want to cut anybody off. please, we still have some way to go. implts mr. murdoch, james, through all the civil actions, have been been paying glenn
moore's legal fees, not you personally but your organization? >> as i said earlier from the question from mr. davis. >> no. let's keep it short. yes or no. it's a yes or no question. >> i don't know the current status of those. are we paying all of his legal fees? >> have you been paying legal fees during the course of the civil actions? >> i don't know the details of the civil actions, but i do know that certain legal fees were paid for him by the company, and i was as surprised and shocked to learn that as you are. >> can you understand that people might ask why a company might wish to pay the legal fees of a convicted felon who has been involved intimately in the destruction of your reputation, if it was not to buy your corporation's silence? >> no, it's not. i can understand that, and that's exactly why i asked the question. it's exactly when the allegations came out, are we
doing this? is this what the company is doing? on legal advice, you know, and again i don't want to be legalistic, and i'm not a lawyer. these are serious glaglitigatio. it's important to get to court at the right time and the strong advice was from time to time it's important and customary and even pay legal fees. >>. >> i don't know the precise status of that now. i know that i asked for those things for the company to find a w way. >> i'll talk to the committee on the status of those legal fees. >> this is a serious question, mr. murdoch sr. is it not time for the
organization to say, enough is enough? this man allegedly hacked the phone of the murdered schoolgirl, millie dowler? is it not time for your organization to say, do your worst. you behaved disgracefully. we're not going to pay any more of your costs? >> i would like to do that. i don't know the status of what we're doing or indeed what his contract was, whether it still has any force. >> if the organization is still paying his fees, will you give the instruction now that that should stop? >> provided it's not in breach of a legal contract, yes. >> i want to return to the question of making a statement without being in the full possession of the facts. during our 2009 inquiry, all the witnesses who came to us testified to being intimately
involved in particular a huge trawl of e-mails after the arrival of colin miler. it seems they're quick to distance themselves from that investigation according to some of the quotes in the newspapers. so could i -- i stated clearly that that trawl, that investigation covered no new evidence. it was still a loan rouge reporter. mr. murdoch, james, can you tell us about the file of e-mails, the so-called internal reports that was discovered allegedly. we read through the pages of the sunday times, a great newspaper, in the offices. can you tell us more about when that was discovered, when you first came to know about it, what's in it? >> i first came to know about that earlier this year in 2011. >> can you be more precise about the time? you've got a great grasp of knowledge here. >> it would have been in the --
it would have been around -- it would have been in the springtime. i don't remember the exact date when i was to talk about it. >> before april? >> it would have been april or may. i can try to find the meeting schedules and whatnot and come back. it was a few months ago. i can't speak, i should say -- i can speak a little bit to it, but as to the activity that was carried out in 2007, again, i piece this back together from the past. it was before any of my involvement, but the company at the time, i think you're referring to a dismissal -- an unfair dismissal case that was brought by mr. goodman, and that was the basis for conducting -- it was right about the time of the conviction, so it was all in that period of time. >> that's what we inferred in our report last year, but despite the assurances as to the other motivations. >> there was a -- it was right
at the time mr. miler had come in, codes of standards had been talked about. this is before my time. all of the 2007 business was there, and the -- an investigation was done or a fact finding piece around this, and there was a -- outside counsel was brought in. and i understand that the legal executives -- i think it was mr. chapman at the time with miler to that effect. the opinion was clear that as to their review, there was no additional illegality with respect to phone hacking in that file. as to their review, that was the opinion that was clear. the company really rested on a number of things from then on, and i certainly know in 2009 when additional allegations came in the summer, the company
really rested on a handful of things. >> i wanted to move right up to date to what was discovered in the offices when it was discovered. so in 2010 the civil glagtss had it was known to us to the company additional new information, new evidence that wasn't there before. and the police investigation started off. one of the things that was went back and looked at -- i suppose it was in the spring by senior people at international was that file, and it was relooked at. it was opened up and looked at, and it was very rapidly brought to our attention that this was something that -- >> when did this happen? when was this looked at? >> again, this is between april, may, and june, in that period. >> who looked at it first? >> on the side of the people
managing the work on behalf of news international from early this year who have been led by mr. lewis, that's correct. >> and what's in that file? it's been reported as a collection of 300 e-mails or loose-leaf binder. what is it? >> as you know, there is an ongoing criminal investigation, and i think it would be wrong of me to talk about specific information or evidence that is subject to and could make problems for the police in doing the important work that they're currently doing. >> i don't want it's going to cause problems with the police if he tells others that a a ring binder with a loose-leaf. what is this? >> it's paper. i think there are e-mails and documents. >> have you read it all? >> i have not read it all, but some it things in it have been shown to me.
>> and what was your reaction? was there expletive you used when you first read some of these e-mails? >> i tried not to use expletives. >> occasionally when you do. >> my reaction immediately was to agree with the recommendation of the executives involved, which was this is something to bring to the attention of the police with respect to their ongoing investigations and perhaps new ones. >> when was it given to the police to be reported june 20th? >> i believe it was in june after we informed the board of the company as well. >> so that dates accurate. >> i believe it was june, yes. >> "the sunday times," a great newspaper, painted a picture on the 10th of july from this file that six so-called gate keepers on the news desk dealt with glenn, and they name thd them.
do you recognize that summary from the file that you've had a look at? >> mr. farrelly, i respect you to understand that detailed questions about any of the evidence, information that we passed to the police in relation to their ongoing criminal inquiries are difficult for me to answer. i would appreciate it if we could allow the police to undergo the important work that they are undergoing. there's a process that's important. we're cooperating with it. we're providing information on a regular basis. the company is providing information on a regular basis as needed by the police, and i really believe we have to allow the police to conduct their investigation and hold the people who did wrong to account in this area. >> okay. i'll respect -- >> i want to comment on anything now. it could have resulted in guilty
peop people. >> i fully understand. i will respect that clearly. the descriptions in the press so they're on the record actually do -- including in "the sunday times" implicate andy in knowledge of payments to the police, so i wouldn't expect you to comment on that. i will now turn to the letter that was provided as -- provided to us by rebekah brooks as evidence during our inquiry that this trawl of e-mails produced nothing more. that letter from lawrence abrahamson, the then senior partner, mentioned that e-mails had been reviewed of andy coulson, stewart, ian edmundson, clive goodman, neil wallace and
joe stenman and nothing came to light from that review that contradicted the lone reporter, rouge reporter working with glenn. knowing what you know now from the other evidence you've discovered, have you looked back at in detail at the basis on which they wrote that letter and why they -- why they gave such a clean bill of health? >> all i can say is that having directed -- having looked at some of the things in that and the advice of the senior people inside the company more recently that looked at that, it was the view of the company self-evidently that it was right to bring this to the attention of the police and go forward. that opinion from the counsel was something that the company, you know, rested on. it was a clear opinion about a
review that was done around those records. in addition in conjunction with the police continuing to say that there was no new evidence and that there was no reason to open a new investigation and in conjunction with the pcc saying that they had done their review and done their inquiry and there was nothing new there, it was viewed that that was a civil matter. it was only real when new evidence emerged those three things began to be undermined. >> can you provide us with the instructions given to the law firm, the information -- the extent of the information that was given to them as of the totality of information that was available? that sort of detail would help us conclude what really happened? >> if there's additional detail required around to those legal instructions, we will consult and come back to the chairman with a way to satisfy you with the information that you'd like to have. >> clearly, we spotted last in
our report that this review coincides not so much with mr. marlin's arrival but with the timing of the industrial tribunal actions that clive goodman and glenn were planning, and that begged the question of why these six individuals were named in there. do you know the reason why it was limited to these six individuals? >> why it was limited to those six individuals i don't know. i think it was in -- i wasn't there at the time, and i can't tell you the circumstances, the conversations that people had with them and the terms of reference of that, but it was viewed that that was something that would be -- had been viewed after the fact that that was, you know, a thorough look at information. based on that review, that opinion was issued. >> neville is one that immediately jumps out. >> again, in hindsight you can say -- we can all say if somebody looked at this and
somebody was known yet and the terms and scope of. >> there's unfair dismissal notwithstanding the criminal convictions. we don't know what they were planning to serve on you. do you know what sorts of allegations they were making? we can only imagine they were saying that such and such a person used such a such person? have you been satisfied with the allegations they were making? >> i think many individuals are currently subject to criminal investigation. some have been arrested recently. these are important matters for the police now. i do think it's important that i don't stray into or i'm not led into commenting specifically about individuals or allegations made in the past. >> the question was whether you satisfy yourself as to what
clive goodman and glenn were alleging in discussions and negotiations that led up to the settlements, if they brought industrial tribunals against you. that was the question. not what they were alleging, but have you satisfied about what they were alleginalleging? >> i'm not aware of allegations at the time and other things. as to goodman, again, this was in 2007 before i was there, it's my understanding that that is what they were helping to deal with and that that opinion did satisfy the company at the time when we -- and the company rested on that opinion for a period of time. >> i take it you'd like to take the opportunity to withdraw this letter as an accurate portrayal of what really went on at "news of the world"? >> that is the letter -- >> this is the harvard lewis letter? >> it's something -- i think it's something that actually -- i'm glad you've asked about it actually, because it is a key
bit of outside legal advice from senior counsel that was provided to the company. the company rested on it. i think it goes some distance in explaining actually why it has taken a long time for new information to come out. i would say i think it's important. it's one of the bases for which the pushback that the company made against new allegations. there was one of those pillars of the environment around the place that led the company to believe that all of these things were a matter of the past and that new allegations -- >> the question was different, mr. murdoch. i asked you whether this letter stimuliing on the record as evidence given to this committee, for whatever reason of a criminal investigation being withdrawn, would you like to withdraw it? >> respectfully, i'm not aware of the legal technicalities of withdrawing that or submitting it on the record. i think it is a relevant document in trying to understand how news international was
thinking at the time. >> we'll ask you the question when we -- >> i would say no, but i can come back after taking counsel and seeing if it's a better idea to do it . >> i'll also wind up given the time, but i have a few more questions. as you've described it and as colin described it, the e-mail investigation was carried out by the i.t. democratic apartment an by john chapman and the human resources director daniel cloak. is that your understanding? >> pardon me? what was the question? i don't understand. is it my understanding that -- >> the investigation itself. you described it and colin described it to us. it was carried out by the i.t. department and overseen by the director of legal affairs, john chapman, and the human resources director, personnel director daniel cloak. is that an accurate description? >> that is my understanding. >> can you tell us why john
chapman has left the organization? >> john chapman and the organization decided it was, you know, in mutual interest to part ways, and i think the -- i think one of the pieces here as well is for the company to move forward is for -- i think this is important, you know. many of the individuals, even if there's no -- if there's no evidence of wrongdoing or anything like that, i think that, you know, no evidence of improprie impropriety, many strids have chosen it's time to part ways. i was not involved. >> you have no evidence to cover up the existence of the file that's been -- >> i do not have that. >> okay. can you tell us the employment status of daniel cloak? >> mr. cloak left the company some time ago, and i don't know what his employment is. he was the director of human resources for a number of years. not that many -- i'm not sure.
but he left over a year ago, i think. i can follow-up with you the status. >> i'm just going quickly to the witnesses who came to us. again, in respect to the file that you've discovered this yeayear regarding les hinton, when did he first become aware of this collection of e-mails and paper, as you discovered, to call it, that clearly rendered the advice given -- the editors gave misleading by him. when did he learn about it? >> i can't speak to mr. hinton's knowledge? are you referring to 2011 or 2007. >> this document left in 2007. >> in 2007. i can't speak to his knowledge, but i would -- i know that mr. hinton was aware of the work that had been carried out, and i think he's testified to this committee to that effect.
>> have you asked him whether mr. murdoch is here. have you asked les whether he knew about this document? >> no. >> why not? >> about? >> which document are you talking about. >> the document that was -- that you discovered in april/may in the offices of the law firm that -- >> i don't think it's, you know -- i have not asked him, but i also think that, you know, he -- i think he's testified to this. he as the chief executive of news international at the time would not have been expected necessarily to read x hundreds or thousands of e-mails there but would rely on the opinion of counsel about what they had done. >> and was colin miler aware of this evidence lying with them? >> i cannot speak to other individuals' knowledge in the past. i simply don't -- >> tom krone? >> i simply can't -- i just -- i
can't speak for them. >> and stewart? that's a general pronunciation. sorry. stewart can you teutner and reb brooks? >> i simple cannot speak for them. i know that mrs. brooks, when she was chief executive of this, was one of the people who blaut it to my attention as a new thing. >> just to finish off this questioning, i'm just going to wrap up. we're left now with a situation where you having looked into this affair, having cooperated with the police cannot tell us who lodged the file with them, who was aware of the content, and who kept you from being in the full possession of the facts. evidence that is clearly now being submitted to the police approximate but clearly
contradicts all the assurances that we were given not in one but in two select committee inquiries. that's frankly i would agree on satisfactory. >> mr. farrelly, i can say that the company at the time engaged an outside law firm to review a number of these e-mails. they were provided to the law firm as i understand it, and an opinion was issued to the company and the opinion was clear. the company rested on that. i cannot speak to individuals' knowledge at different times, because i don't know. what i do know is that the company rested on that, rested on the fact that the police told us, that there was no new evidence and no reason for a new investigation and rested on the opinion of the pcc that there was no new information and no reason to carry it further. it wasn't until in civility
gagss going on that we -- the company immediately went to restarted this. >> these were in your possession all the time. it's not simply evidence that emerged through litigation. mr. murdoch sr. >> it was relooked at -- i'm sorry. may i? >> yes. >> it was looked at in conjunction with the new and restarted criminal investigation. these are serious matters. it was deemed that these things would be of interest to the police. we immediately brought an additional counsel, lord mcdonald, who i believe you mentioned earlier, to help advise the company on what the appropriate way forward in terms of full transparent stee and cooperation with police investigations were. they were very serious matters,
and the company took them seriously. >> just two questions. >> very quickly. >> the situation that i just painted where we're now here, not knowing who at news international, "news of the world" was complicit in keeping that file containing however many bits of paper, we're nowhere near it, knowing who knew what and when about that file. >> evidence that clearly contradicts not only the select committee but evidence as it would appear that led your closest and trusted aide over many years to give misleading evidence. do you find that a satisfactory state of fairs? >> no, i do not. >> what do you think the company should do about it in a follow-up to this selected committee inquiry? >> well, mr. chapman, who was in
charge of this, has left us. and he had that report for a number of years, and i told mr. lewis who looked at it that we immediately said we needed legal advice to see how to go to the police with this, and how we should present it, et cetera. >> my understanding is that the file was with the lawyers, it was with the law firm and there was no reason to look at it. the opinion was very, very clear based on the review that was done. as soon as it was in the new criminal investigation, it was deemed appropriate to look at. it was immediately done so. >> mr. murdoch you regressed on the point you didn't read your own newspapers. my final question, mr. murdoch. given the picture that's been painted of individuals on the news desk acting as gatekeepers
for a private investigator, do you think it's possible at all that editors of your newspaper would not have known about these activity scienies activities? do you think it's remotely possible? >> i can't say that because of the police inquiries, and coming -- i presume coming judicial proceedings. that's all i can tell you, except it was my understandi understanding -- i better not say it. mr. miler was appointed there by mr. hinton to find out what the hell was going on, and that he commissioned that inquiry. now, that is my understanding of it it. i cannot swear to the accuracy
of it. >> thank you. >> i'm going to appeal for brevity because we've been going for two hours now. >> it's a mystery to us how some of the newspapers broke it it. i'm very familiar in the industry. could you try to paint a picture of a week's operation at "news of the world"? how closely involved were you in controlling "the news of the world"? >> any involvement was the business overseeing the region of europe and asia to be clear in 2008 starting in december i was chief executive for europe and asia and as well as our uk publishing business. one title of which is the "news of the world." so i can't say i was ever
intimately involved with the workings of "the news of the world." >> what results would come to you within the seven days after publication, presumably the sales, the advertising income and the newspaper on the profitability week by week presumably. i know that -- rupert murdoch would find it -- >> i certainly get that. >> yeah, yeah. these are enterprises and sales and advertising figures and personnel numbers and all of those things are relevant. managers look at those things. >> we understand from questions that have been answered already that when it comes to legal issues, settling of claims, that that's taken outside from the day-to-day management of the news, isn't it? >> each group of companies or titles will have their own legal
executives that deal with things like libel or other things to check that something doesn't go into the paper that's wrong. sometimes it's right or wrong. each has its own legal resource, and the managing editor is involved in those things as well as the kocounsel office in the newspaper. >> the editor of "the news of the world" -- >> my son's typical week would well have been a day in munich or a day in italia. we had a difficult situation with a particularly tricky competitor, if i may say so. and he had a lot on his plate. >> i'll leave some of these -- it came clear from the first couple of questions to you,
rupert murdoch, that you've been kept in the dark quite a bit on some of these. is there no -- >> nobody kept me in the dark. i may have been lax in not asking more, but it was such a tiny part of our business. >> i understand that. obviously, it has come to that point, you wouldn't be here if it wasn't extremely serious. >> i'm extremely serious. >> is there no written rules that certain things have to be reported straight to the very t top? >> yes. anything that's seen as a crisis comes to me. >> mr. cain, may i? i think it's important to know there's a difference between being kept in a dark and a company that's a large company, the management of which is delegated to managers of different companies within the group and so on and so forth. i think to suggest that my
father or myself were kept in the dark is a different thing from saying that actually the management and the running of these businesses is often delegated either to the chief executive of a different company or an editor or managing editor and decision-making has to be there. there are thresholds of materiality if you will where by things have to move upstream so something has to be brought to the attention. from a financial threshold point of view, i think we addressed that earlier, with respect to the settlement -- out of court settlement with mr. taylor, but also from the sfintd tandpoint things like alleged criminality, violations of our own code of conduct, things like that. those are things that the company's internal audit function as well the audit committee as well as the senior executives of the committee are expected to be made aware of as they were in the case of the criminal prosecutions in 2007.
>> you know, whatever efforts were made, whatever rules there were, you know, we reached -- we reached a crisis point, otherwise you wouldn't be here today and "the news of the world" wouldn't be closed. who really is responsible? who do you hold responsible for that failure? you're saying that people should have told me, but you're reallying say to us now not that they should is told you, but you let them get -- what they should have told you. what's going on? >> it's a good question, but i'm not saying somebody should have told me. to my knowledge certain things were not known, and when new information came to light, with respect to my knowledge of these events and to the understanding when new information came to light, the company acted on it. the company acted on it in a right and proper way as best the company could.
but it's difficult to say that the company should have been told something, if it's not known that a thing was a known fact to be told. now, i've been asked today that, you know, about what other people knew when, and i can only rest on what they have told me or what they have told you in previous hearings. i know -- i understand completely your frustration about this. you can imagine my own frustration in 2010 when this civili splitigation came to a pt where things came out. i suddenly realized that actually the pushback or the denial of the veracity of allegations made earlier particularly in 2009 had been too strong. that's a matter of real regret, because all the facts were not known when that was done. that is a matter of deep regret, and it is why we're here today with you trying to be as
transparent as we possibly can. >> this is really a rhetorical question. i'm sure your answer will be what i expect. it's admirable, the fact that you had such long-term employees who have become friends, very close friends i'm sure. mr. rupert, explain that with his determination to look after rebekah brooks. so it's admirable, but there was a lot of criticism at the time. this isn't a criticism, james, of your ability. but there was criticism in the financial press that it was nepotism to appoint -- in retrospect. i know what the answer is. do you regret, do you regret, mr. rupert, it has become really a family organization? >> let me get back to this.
when the judge became available of head of this, several people were fired. several people were hired including my son. not just board committees, but outside experts, et cetera. they made the conclusion that he was the right person. the press all had a field day. when he left to go to what i promoted him to take charge of much wider responsibilities, we had calls from all the big shareholders -- many big shareholders saying it was a terrible thing to take him away, because he had done such a great job. >> i said it wasn't the ability of james, but the fact that you
have been -- you didn't know about so many of these criminal activities that went on, do you not think that was more likely because of this sort of family history? i don't mean james here. i'm talking about people that weren't direct members of your family, but became friends? >> no. >> you don't think that's -- >> i don't. i don't think -- >> it has been mismanaged. >> i don't think he ms. led me for a minute. you must find out for yourself and make your own conclusion. it may have been misleading, but he certainly did not know of anything. >> thank you very much. >> i've got two more members, dana collins. >> thank you. >> before i address my questions to the hearing, i'd like to make a short declaration of my own which i previously declared to the committee. my wife is an employee by
edelman engaged by this corporation. i want to share this with you before asking any questions. mr. rupert murdoch you said earlier on we live in a transparent society. do you think it's right they expect total privacy in a society like that? >> no. >> where do you think that lies? i noticed in the watergate investigation, for example, personal banking and phone records were used that belonged to one of the witnesses were irrelevant to that investigation. to what extent do you think the use of confidential private information, even phone records and hacking is permissible in the pursuit of a news story? >> i think phone hacking is something quite different, but i believe investigative journalism, particularly competitive, does lead to a more transparent and open society. as inconvenient as that may be to other people, and i think we're a better society because of it.
and i think we are probably more an open society than even the united states. >> where do you draw the line on that, if i may ask? what are the boundaries of legitimate investigation? what are the boundaries? >> there was a great -- it would have been a terrible outcry when the -- i'm sorry to say this. i know there are no circumstances or anyone else around here. when the daily telegraph bought a series of stolen documents, of all the expenses of mps, it caused a huge outcry. i think there is an answer to it, and we ought to look at it as open and clear society in the world, which is singapore, where every minute gets at least a
million dollars a year and the prime minister a lot more and there's no temptation and it is the cleanest society you'd find anywhere. >> good luck in selling that idea. >> i mean they were serious. it is ridiculous. they were reduced to doing what they did. >> may i help, mr. collins? i think it's a very good question, and i think it's an important question. i understand it's going to be one of the subjects of the judicial inquiry, which the prime minister announced last week, which as a company we immediately welcomed and we look forward to. this question of public interest and the question of what's acceptable and what isn't in terms of investigative techniques is an important one, but let me be very clear. the codes of conduct of news corporation globally for employees and journalists and otherwise are very clear, that breaking the law is a very, very serious matter.
it should be people who are lawbreakers should be held to account. payments to police and things like that, we don't think they should have any place in our business. >> you would be clear within our questions, the phone hacking wasn't only illegal but totally unacceptable? >> i think particularly in light of the successful prosecutions and convictions of the individuals involved in 2007, you know, it could not be taken more seriously. if new evidence emerges and as it has in cases, you know, the company acts on it very, very quickly. >> you think you have a cultural problem. rupert murdoch, if i may, do you think you have a cultural problem that people tell you things that you want to hear, and even people that are yoous trusted advisers and work for you for years withhold information because they want favor? >> not my trusted advisers, certainly. you should hear the
conversations in my office. they're coming in all the time. >> i'm not asking. a lot of your trusted advisers. >> most of them have crazy ideas. >> so a lot of your trusted advisers have left your company? >> we're a very big company. i'm sure there may be people that try to please me. that could be human nature, and it's up to me to see through that. >> let me ask you, why doourng there's pressure on editors of senior managers to get scoops out to each other, to win favor within the organization that needs them to take risks and clearly in the case of "news of the world" push boundaries that broke the law? >> given there's pressure on the editors of the newspapers and there's boundaries where "news of the world" there's illegal
action of wrongdoing broke the law to get scoops. >> i think it was terribly wrong and no excuse for breaking law. this is not right for newspapers, all newspapers when they wish to to campaign for change in the law, but never to break it it. >> it's just two further questions for me. >> i'll just say i -- this is perhaps addressing some of that. i just wanted to say that i was brought up by a father who was not rich but was a great journalist. and he just before he died bought a small paper specif specifically and he was given a chance to do good. i remember what he did and what he was most proud of and for
which he was hated in this country by many people for many, many years, which was expose the scand scand scandal, which i remain very, very proud of. >> i think students of history are well aware of it. >> i would love to see my sons and daughters follow everything, if they're interested. >> rupert murdoch, you said earlier on that that you had frequent meetings with prime ministers during your career. in the period after the arrest -- >> i wish they'd leave me alone. in the arrest of clive goodman, which you said earlier on you were aware of the situation when clive goodman was sent to prison and you were at the case of that stage. in the years after that where there were numerous reports, investigations, hearings of this committee. we heard a lot about them today. did any senior politicians you were in contact with during that
period raised this as an issue with you? >> absolutely never. the politician i met motor in those days was mr. brown when he was chancellor. his wife and my wife struck up quite a friendship, and our children played together on many occasions. i'm very sorry that i'm no longer -- i felt he had great values, which i shared with him. i'm sorry that we've come apart, and i hope one day we can put it together again. >> rupert, you said in your interview you gave to the "wall street journal" you thought that your fellow executives for the news corporation had handled this crisis very well with just a few minor mistakes. do you stand by that statement, or do you believe the level of mistakes was far greater than that? >> they seem big now. what we did was terrible as far as handling the crisis. the -- i'm sorry.
i started to tell you. i don't believe that either he or mr. any great mistakes, or any -- but were mistakes made within the organization, absolutely. with people i trusted or they trusted badly betrayed, yes. >> referring this to james murdoch, it was reported when rebekah brooks spoke to staff when the announcement of the closing of "news of the world" was made, she said they might understand why the paper had to close. do you think, what's the significance of that period of time of a year? do you expect there will be more
revelations that will come out that made the closure inevitable? >> i can't speak to what she was specifically referring to. she made those comments herself and as a -- as a -- when she was saying good-bye sadly to the staff, but i can say that, you know, what happened at the "news of the world" and the events leading up to the 2007 affairs and prosecutions and what we know about those things now were bad, and there were things that should not have anyplace in our organization, and there are things we unreservedly and really sincerely am sorry for, we haven't seen the end of this in terms of the ongoing police investigations that are there. as you know, mr. collins, there are a number of people who have been arrested. we don't know what's going to happen in the future around those things. but given the breach of trust,
given the allegations that were emerging at a rapid pace, you know, it was clear to me, anyway, and i think that the future will bear this out without any specific knowledge of the future, obviously, that it was the right thing for the paper to cease publication. >> your father said in his "wall street journal" interview that you, mr. james murdoch, had acted as fast as he could the moment he could. does that suggest that you were held back at any point, have you been frustrated in this process in the last few weeks? >> as i said to the committee earlier, i can't remember which member, my apologies, but mr. collins, this has been a frustrating process and actually, you know, my frustration i think, my real anger to learn that there was new evidence emerging as late as the end of 2010 was real and is real, and you know, what i've done and what the company has
tried to do is take new information, adjust our course, behave with propriety, behave quickly, behave in a humble way with respect to what's happened and with respect to trying to really put it right. that's what we're trying to do. it was enormously frustrating. that does not mean that i have any knowledge of anyone intentionally misleading me in the company, i don't, which makes it doubly frustrating. but it is -- we are where we are. new information emerged through a legitimate due process of a civil trial. the company acted on it as fast as possibly could be expected, and actually, still new information or new allegations are emerging that, you know, the company is -- we are trying to deal with in as right a way as we can, in the best way possible. >> thank you. >> the good news is that i am your last questioner. i will try to be -- i have a few
very specific questions that i would like to ask you. starting with you, mr. james murdoch, i know we have been over at length the differences in the size of the settlements paid, the taylor settlements and the other settlements that followed. can you tell me whether or not the taylor settlement included a confidentiality clause and maybe the other settlement did not? >> oh! >> outrageous. >> this hearing is suspended for ten minutes. >> what seems to have happened is a -- what seems to have happened is a disturbance in the committee room in terms of the normal protocol. the picture has immediately gone
to the wall so we can't see what that disturbance was. from the vantage point of looking at the picture, there was a lot of noise, something happened off to the left. it's not clear if anybody had tried to approach the murdochs or not. certainly it was just a question of noise and a lot of shouting, which is somewhat surprising, since the hearing has been going on for nearly two and a half hours, why it should happen at this particular moment isn't clear. judging from the seconds that we saw before the camera moved off the committee and on to the wall, that picture you're looking at at the moment, by the way, is bluntly the wallpaper above the committee, and that is the normal protocol both in parliament and in these committees, if there is an incident then it tends to move away. the only other incident there
has been during this particular hearing was right at the beginning, a sign was held up saying the people against murdoch and there was a lot of to'ing and fro'ing and a bit of shouting. we will show you exactly what happened so you can see for yourself again. let's just look at those pictures. the moment when the incident happened. >> this hearing is suspended for ten minutes. >> okay. now, that's what happened. so what did we see? we heard a noise, a lot of shouting. you saw james murdoch leaping, looking to go to his father's defense. his father, rupert murdoch, remains seated throughout and it doesn't seem at that point -- there we go. look. it doesn't seem as if anything happened in terms of actually getting to the murdochs, then a member of the police,
traditional british bobby right down to the helmet goes and joins in. we don't know what it's all about. there you see the pictures again. we'll keep showing you that so you can make your own judgments. what have we heard over the last two and a half hours? long detailed testimony. jeffrey robertson is a leading human rights attorney who argued many landmark media cases, acted both for and against rupert murdoch. he is with us now. very detailed, but what do you make of what we've heard? >> well, the first interjection, rupert said this is the most humble day of my life. that was his carefully rehearsed interjection because the strategy of the murdochs, father and son, was clearly to let james do all the talking in his rather management-speak, donald duck accent, doing generalizations that were difficult to pin down. this committee did rather badly,
i have to say, in cross-examination. they were feckless, they weren't forensic. they didn't get at very much truth. i think the two things that came through, first the symbol which rupert admitted of going to number 10 downing street at the prime minister's suggestion, going in the back door to be congratulated and thanked for his electoral support, and he had done that with previous prime ministers as well. so there is a symbol of the seamy side of british democracy, the proprietor who delivered the verdict being snuck in like a rat at the back door. the other interesting shaft of light which had both murdochs i think on the run was asked by paul farrelly. he didn't follow it up too well but it was have you paid the legal fees and are you still paying them. well, the murdochs didn't know
which way to look. father and son mumbled something about legal advice, it was obvious they admitted they had paid glenn mulcare. murdoch said maybe the contract requires us to still pay him. this is the man who hacked milly dowler's phone, who hacked the phones of the grieving relatives after their sons and daughters had been killed by terrorists or in action, and for whom the murdochs have pretended to have apologized for. for this man's action. yet they may still be paying his legal fees as they've done in the past. now, what the committee should have said is will you stop paying them and will you call upon mr. mulcare to tell us the truth. whatever your contractual arrangement -- >> i'm sorry, i'm going to interrupt you there. i do need to interrupt you because i just need to give some more facts about the incident
that we have just seen take place. apparently, the police have removed an individual from the hearing room with a white substance. whether that is paint or some sort of powder, we don't know, but somebody has been removed from the room. he's laughing it off in some ways and sort of saying that it's not a terribly serious incident that took place. there's big ben chiming 5:00 in the afternoon. the day has moved on quite rapidly. let's turn to the political documentary maker and broadcaster who has interviewed more prime ministers than you can shake a stick at. michael, do you think that any in the political elite will have been -- will be a little more concerned tonight or rest a little bit easier by what they've heard from the murdochs?
>> well, i think for the political elite, this was a moment of truth. it was the emperor's new clothes. poor old rupert murdoch. old is the world. here is the guy who successive prime ministers have been paying court to, have been going to his parties, inviting him to their parties, listening to everything he says. it was said to me, the way we would tailor advice to ministers would be to factor in what rupert murdoch and what news international newspapers would be saying. that was advice to ministers. this was the sun king they all worshipped at. today, the pauses that he had before he answered questions, rupert murdoch, would have made harold pinter proud, had pinter been alive to see it. they were extraordinary. this was the emperor who no longer had his clothes.
>> okay. now, before we come back to you, stay with me, michael. stay with me, michael. i want to show, proving there's nothing like seeing it again and preferably when you can see it even slower, let's have a look at the slow motion replay of the incident that took place, and you can make your own movement. there you are. there we are. so you see james murdoch in the middle there getting up and that gives you an idea of what happened. michael, what did you make of rupert murdoch and james, the body language? some people here, i'll say it quite openly, some people here suggested during the testimony that james murdoch seemed out of his depth, rupert murdoch seemed to be out of touch. are we just missing the point here? >> i don't think we are missing the point here.
for 50 years, ever since rupert murdoch became a big figure in british journalism, he has been the dominant figure under the influence of his father, sir keith murdoch. i was in the panorama hospitality room 30 years ago when james murdoch came to go on panorama to show he was a fit and proper person, he was the owner of the "news of the world" and "the sun" and he wanted to take over the "times" and he came with his young son, age 11. it was either james or -- i'm afraid i can't remember. he was getting the early taste of the dynasty. i'm afraid the dynasty is crumblicrum crumbling before our eyes. >> stay with us. plenty more to talk with you about. let's talk to jonathan walls, cnn's producer in the room, who
joins me on the line. let's have some facts. what actually happened? >> well, the last member of the committee was to begin her questioning. i was sitting in the front row directly behind and slightly to the left of rupert murdoch when suddenly, someone from the back, a member of the public wearing a checked shirt, walked to the front with a bag, pulled out a polystyrene plate with what seemed to be shaving foam, flashed it in the face of rupert murdoch. wendy murdoch, his wife, jumped up immediately to his defense to try and beat back, he had just thrown this plate with foam on it into rupert murdoch's face. the man said you are a greedy billionaire. the foam, it appears to be shaving foam, some of it fell on me. >> so let's be clear. did this shaving foam hit rupert
murdoch in the face? >> squarely in the face, yes. everyone was a bit surprised. nobody reacted in time. and the person who marched forward, he was a man who appeared to be in his late 20s, perhaps 30s, threw the plate with a large amount of light blue shaving foam on it and hit him squarely in the face. >> and rupert murdoch's wife you say was there and the woman in the pink, was there, and we can see as these pictures that we're showing now, mrs. murdoch leaping from her seat and -- did any of the murdochs or anybody else before the police got there apprehend or get a hand on the assailant? >> not really. he was given a pretty clear line in which to throw the plate with the foam on it into his face.
there was one policeman who tried to wrestle him away as soon as he had thrown it. he got a fair share of shaving foam on himself. by then it was too little, too late. murdoch was stunned, not injured. as wendy murdoch, who shortly afterwards seemed to be in fairly good spirits, she was smiling about how quickly she was able to react to this incident. members of rupert murdoch's support team, i'm not sure whether it was a legal advisor, but also sitting in the front row, approached another policeman in astonishment asking how on earth can you let this happen. >> okay. all right. so the question begs -- this all begs the question why now. this thing has been going for two and a half hours. frankly, there had been moments when one could have almost fallen asleep listening to the backward and forwardness in the answers. so any indication why at this point in the proceedings, this chap decided to interrupt and
cause the disturbance? >> it's not clear. there was a minor disturbance at the very, very beginning of the hearing when three protesters stood up with signs saying murdoch was a news criminal. they were asked to leave. so perhaps they could have waited. there was no clear indication as to why this person who threw this plate of foam -- >> i'm interrupting you there, jonathan, so that i can just describe. you see the pictures we are showing now, sorry to interrupt you, but these are cnn pictures of the man who has been arrested and the foam being wiped off his face. this is all taking place in a place just, i don't know, 100 yards or so, 150 yards from where i'm standing. as you say, the man in the checked shirt. i suppose the questions will be asked how he got what he got into the room, won't it,
jonathan? >> well, the security here is going to ensure that serious weapons and obviously more threatening objects don't make their way through. it's quite possible he could have just brought this in and it seemed as innocuous as it was on the face of it, shaving foam. however, he obviously used it and had it prepared in this blue plastic bag that he was carrying for purposes one wouldn't specifically expect from shaving foam. >> all right. we shall pause there, jonathan, because as we are talking, i see that the picture has now returned and unless i'm mistaken, the hearing is resuming. let's rejoin the chairman. >> -- for a long time. i would like to apologize on behalf of the committee for the way you have been treated. i will make a report to the
speaker and i assure you, we will take action to try and find out how that was able to occur. but it is extremely good of you to agree to continue the session and to allow my colleague just to finish her questions. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> if i may start by saying, mrs. murdoch, i said on sky news when discussing your initial appearance, it would have showed guts and leadership for you to show up today and answer questions. i must say i think it shows immense guts, mr. rupert murdoch, for you to continue answering questions now under the circumstances, and i thank you for it. >> thank you. >> my questions will be just as tough as they would have been had this unfortunate incident not have occurred. so mr. james murdoch, if i can just take you back briefly before we were so rudely interrupted to the disparity of the settlements. did the taylor settlement include a confidentiality
clause? >> i can tell you that the taylor settlement was a confidential settlement and as to other settlements post that, more recent settlements, some have been confidential. i believe some have been confidential, some not. i don't believe any have been confidential settlements but i can certainly follow up as to whether or not there have been any. it's customary in an out of court settlement of this nature for both parties to agree. there's nothing unusual about an out of court settlement being made confidential and agreed to being confidential but it was, and with respect to i think the basis of the question, which is about the disparity in the amount of money involved, there was nothing in the taylor settlement with respect to confidentiality that spoke to the amount of money. the amount of money was derived as i testified earlier from a judgment made about what the
likely damages would be and what the likely expenses and litigation costs would have been had the company taken the litigation to its end and lost. >> yes. you have been very clear about that is your explanation for the size of the settlement. i merely put it to you that an inference could be drawn if the larger settlements contained confidentiality clauses and the smaller settlements did not, that despite what you say about it being a pragmatic decision based on the costs to the company if not settling, an inference could be drawn that silence was being bought by the presence of the confidentiality clause in the larger settlements. >> that inference would be false. >> okay. fair enough. many people, i think this is another bit, will find it quite hard to believe that two executives who nobody would regard as passive had such little knowledge of widespread illegality at one of your flagship papers. can i ask you very specifically, mr. james murdoch first, when did you become aware that the phones not merely of celebrities
and members of the royal family, also victims of crime, had been hacked? when did you become aware that the phone of the murder victim milly dowler had been hacked? >> the terrible -- the terrible instance of voicemail interception around milly dowler case only came to my attention when it was reported in the press a few weeks ago. >> only when "the guardian" reported it? >> it was a total shock. that was the first i had heard of it and became aware of it. >> is that the same for hacking of other victims of crime, in other words, have you been made aware prior to the milly dowler story breaking that your reporters hacked into the phones of any other crime victims? >> no. i have not been -- i had not been made aware of that. >> okay. just for the record, though you answered this to my colleague jim sheridan earlier, but it's a very lively interest
[ inaudible ]. -- alleging his phone was hacked on u.s. soil. given that allegation, are you absolutely confident that no employee or contractor of news corp or any of its properties hacked the phones of 9/11 victims? or their families? >> we have no evidence of that at all. >> have any credible allegations, i see you hesitating, mr. james murdoch. >> i was just going to say, sorry, i was just going to say those are incredibly serious allegations and they have come to light very recently. we do not know the veracity of those allegations and are trying to understand precisely what they are and any investigations. i was in -- i remember well, as all of us do, the september 11th attacks and i was in the far east living there at the time, and it is just appalling to think that anyone associated with one of our papers would
have done something like that. i'm aware of no evidence about that. i'm well aware of the allegations and will eagerly cooperate with any investigations or try to find out what went on at that time. this is very, very new allegations, just a few days old, i think, but they are very serious allegations and that sort of activity would have absolutely, you know, no place. it would be appalling. >> from the information provided to you so far, i noted mr. rupert murdoch's answer was emphatic. your answer, mr. james murdoch, was somewhat more nuanced. have you received any information which gives you cause for concern that employees of news corp or contractors of news corp may have indulged in that kind of act? >> no. we have only seen -- we have only seen the allegations that have been made in the press. i think it was in "the mirror" or something like that. and we are actively trying to -- we would like to know exactly
what those allegations are and how to understand, you know -- >> you have seen no internal documents, memos, records or received any verbal reports that any employee of news corp hacked into the phone line -- >> no. definitely not. >> thank you. have you as a result of a wider review, clearly this has been a shock to your corporate culture, have you heard from any of your employees of papers in other countries that phone hacking or illegal practices may have been happening in those territories, in your australian properties or any territory indeed when news corp owns media properties? are you doing a global review and have you heard of any allegations of phone hacking in your other territories? >> i am not aware of any allegations in any of those territories. i haven't heard of those allegations but i would go back to the code of ethics and code of conduct that all of our colleagues at news corporation globally, be they journalists or management, are required to have when they join the company and are briefed on those things.
it is a matter of real seriousness. the journalistic ethics of any of the newspapers or television channels within the group, and certainly, it's something that on a global basis, you know, we want to be consistent. we want to be doing the right thing and when i say that illegal behavior has no place in this company, that goes for the whole company. >> mr. rupert murdoch, you are the chairman and chief executive of news corp. you are the head of the global company. the buck stops with you. given these allegations that you have said indeed when you opened this session, you said this was the most humiliating day of your life. given -- sorry? >> humble. >> i beg your pardon. that is a mistake. the most humble day of your life. you feel humbled by these events. you are ultimately in charge of the company. given your shock at these things being laid out before you and the fact that you didn't know anything about them, have you instructed your editors around the world to engage in a review
of their own newsrooms to be sure this isn't being replicated in other news corp papers around the globe? and if not, will you do so? >> no, but i am more than prepared to do so. >> thank you. one final question, or two final questions. the first is, you touched earlier, mr. james murdoch, very briefly, you touched on the general culture of phone hacking and illegal practices that has in the past happened in this country. if i could put a couple of things to you. piers morgan, who is now a celebrity anchor at cnn, did not appear to have asked him any questions at all about phone hacking. he said in his book "the insider" recently that little trick of entering a standard four-digit code allows anyone to call a number and hear all your messages. in that book he boasted that using that little trick enables him to win scoop of the year on
a story. that is a former editor of "the daily mirror" being very open about his personal use of phone hacking. yesterday, in parliament -- i'm sorry? indeed, a former "news of the world" executive, was boasting about a story that happened when he was editor of "the daily mirror." yesterday, paul dacor said in my view, "the daily mail" has never in its history run a story based on phone hacking in any way, yet operation motor man, of which you, i'm sure, mr. james murdoch, your advisors will have made you aware, had 50 journalists paid for 902 pieces of information obtained by the private investigator steve witmore who had been found to use some shall we say unorthodox methods. you told me earlier, mr. murdoch, that your advisors in prepping you to come before this committee had told you to simply
tell the truth, which i think was excellent advice. is it not the fact, is it not the truth of the matter that journalists at the "daily mail" -- i'm sorry, at the "news of the world" felt entitled to go out there and use deception and phone hacking because that was part of the general culture of corruption in the british tabloid press, and that they didn't kick it up the chain to you because they felt they were entitled to use the same methods as everybody else? isn't that the plain fact of the matter? >> i am aware of those reports, the questions around other newspapers and their use of private investigators, but i think really, you know, all i can really speak to in this matter is the behaviors and the culture at the "news of the world" as we understand it, how we are trying to find out what really happened in the period in question, but also, i think importantly, it's not for me
here today to impugn other newspapers, other journalists, other things like that. >> i'm asking if the "news of the world" felt inured to engaging in these legal practices, particularly phone hacking, because it was so wide in british tabloid journalism. did they not see it as evil as it was because it was so widespread? >> i don't accept that if a journalist on one of our papers or at a television channel or -- or -- or internet news operation feels that they don't have to hold themselves to a higher standard, you know, that -- i think that it's important that we don't say listen, everybody was doing it and that's why people are doing this. at the end of the day, we have to have a set of standards that we believe in. we have to have titles and journalists who operate to the highest possible standard and we have to make sure that when they don't live up to that, that they
are held to account. that's really the focus for us. >> mr. rupert murdoch, have you considered suing hobart and lewis? you have said in the past the reason you did not do an internal investigation, one of your first answers, was that you relied -- to my colleague, that you relied on the investigation by the police. the investigation by the complaints commission and the investigation undertaken by your solicitors, under whose care this enormous pile of documents was found. there's an old saying if you want something done, you should do it yourself. in this case, you relied on three sets of people, all of whose investigations were severely lacking. have you considered suing them? >> i think any future legal claims or actions in any matter is really a matter for the future. that's not -- this really today is about how we actually make
sure that these things don't happen again. so i won't comment or speculate on any future legal matters. >> okay. the file of evidence, you were asked by my colleague if you have read it yourself and you said no. under the circumstances, where you relied on people and advisors and they have severely let your company down, do you not think, mr. murdoch, that perhaps you and you, mr. rupert murdoch, ought to take the time and read through everything in that file yourselves personally? >> for clarity, for clarity, i did say that i did read some of the contents of that. they were shown to me. what i saw was sufficient to know that it should be -- that the right thing to do was to hand these over to the authorities to help them with their investigation. >> i understand that, but do you not think that -- you were shown a representative sample which can be tricky. under the circumstances and the enormous reputational damage i'm sure you will be the first to admit has been done to news corp, do you not think that as senior executives of the company, you should take the time and read through the entire file so that you're completely apprised of what happened and you're not relying on anybody
else? >> i'm happy to do so. i think i've seen a bit of it. >> okay. my last question is for you, mr. rupert murdoch. you've said that your friend of 52 years, i think, had stepped down and had resigned because he was in charge of the company at the time. in other words, he said he was the captain of the ship and therefore, he resigned. is it not the case, sir, that you in fact are the captain of the ship? you are the chief executive officer of news corp, the global corporation. >> a much bigger ship. >> it is a much bigger ship, but you are in charge of it. as you said in earlier questions, you do not regard yourself as a hands-off chief executive. you work 10 to 12 hours a day. this terrible thing happened on your watch. mr. murdoch, have you considered resigning? >> no. >> why not? >> because i feel that people i trusted, i'm not saying who, i don't know what level, have let
me down and i think they behaved disgracefully, betrayed the company and me, and it's for them to pay. i think that frankly, i'm the best person to clean this up. >> thank you, mr. murdoch. as i say, i do very much appreciate your immense courage in having seen this session through despite the common assault that just happened to you. thank you. >> thank you. >> i will allow mr. watson a very brief question. >> james, if i can call you james, sorry, to differentiate. when you signed off the taylor payment, did you see or were you made aware of the e-mail, the transcript of the hacked voicemail message? >> no. i was not aware of that at the time. >> so why on earth was it -- but you paid an astronomical sum and there was no reason to. >> there was every reason to
settle the case, given the likelihood of losing the case and given the damages that we had received would be levied. >> if taylor and clifford are prepared to release their obligation to confidentiality, will you release them from their confidentiality clause so that we can get to the full facts of those particular cases? >> i cannot comment on the clifford matter at all. i wasn't involved in that matter. as to the taylor matter, it is a confidential agreement. i don't think it's worth exploring hypotheticals. >> the facts of this case help us get to the truth. if he removes himself from an obligation, if he allows his papers to be released -- >> it's a hypothetical scenario. i'm happy to correspond with the chairman about what specifically more you would like to know about the settlements. >> why would you want -- >> -- detailed testimony i have given you today. >> do you mind if i carry on
with a few more questions so i can get to the end of this? >> i'm going to call a halt. i think we have covered this at some considerable length. >> well, we haven't, actually, chairman. we haven't. mr. murdoch, your wife has a very good left hook. mr. murdoch, i know you did ask if you could make a closing statement. the committee would be entirely content for you to do so. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and members of the committee. i would just like to read a short statement now. my son and i came here with great respect for all of you, for parliament and for the people of britain whom you represent. this is the most humble day of my career and all that has happened, i know we needed to be here today. james and i would like to say how sorry we are for what has happened, especially with regard
to listening to the voicemail of victims of crime. my company has 52,000 employees. i have led it for 57 years and i have made my share of mistakes. i have lived in many countries, employed thousands of honest and hard-working journalists, owned nearly 200 newspapers of very different sizes, and followed countless stories about people and families around the world. at no time do i remember being as sickened as when i heard what the dowler family had to endure. which i think was last monday week. nor do i recall being as angry as when i was told that the "news of the world" could have compounded their distress. i want to thank the dowlers for graciously giving me the opportunity to apologize in
person. i would like all the victims of phone hacking to know how completely and deeply sorry i am, apologizing cannot take back what has happened. still, i want them to know the depth of my regret for the horrible invasions into their lives. i fully understand their ire, and i intend to work tirelessly to merit their forgiveness. i understand our responsibility to cooperate with today's session as well as with future inquiries. we now know that things went badly wrong at the "news of the world." for a newspaper that held others to account, but failed when it came to itself. behavior -- the behavior that occurred went against everything that i stand for, and my son, too, and not only we have not only betrayed our readers and
me, but also the many thousands of magnificent professionals in other divisions of our company around the world. so let me be clear in saying invading people's privacy by listening to their voicemail is wrong. paying police officers for information is wrong. they are inconsistent with our codes of conduct and neither has anyplace in any part of the company that i run. saying sorry is not enough. things must be put right. no excuses. this is why news international is cooperating fully with the police, whose job it is to see that justice is done. it is our duty not to prejudice the outcome of the legal process. i'm sure the committee will understand this. i wish we had managed to see and
fully solve these problems much earlier. when two men were sent to prison in 2007, i thought this matter had been settled. the police ended their investigations and i was told that news international conducted an internal review. i am confident that when james later rejoined news corporation, he thought the case had closed, too. these are subjects you will no doubt wish to explore. and have explored today. this country has given me, our companies and our employees, many opportunities. i'm grateful for them. i hope our contributions to britain will one day also be recognized. above all, i hope that we will come to understand the wrongs of the past and prevent them from happening again and in the years ahead, restore the nation's trust in our company and in all
british journalism. i am committed to doing everything in my power to make this happen. thank you. >> thank you. can i, on behalf of the committee, thank you for giving up so much of your time in order to come here and i would like to apologize again for the wholly unacceptable treatment that you received from a member of the public. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you all. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> the committee will now have a break for five minutes before we move to the next part. >> right. well, we heard the important evidence there from rupert murdoch. there is now going to be a short five-minute recess before the hearing will continue. that will be with rebekah brooks. we expect rupert murdoch there, quite clear, saying phone hacking is wrong, paying police
officers is wrong, has no part in news international, no part in news corp, and saying there will be no excuses. our colleague looks at these things from a rounded point of view, did the murdochs do what they needed to do to put a bit of shine back on the company, or not? >> i think, richard, if you look at all the comments they made over the course of the past three hours, what comes out loud and clear to me are two executives who appear profoundly out of touch. some of the statements that we heard earlier, i made lots of notes as you can imagine, all news organizations use private investigators, as if that legitimizes the practice. i trusted people. excuse me, the chief executive of a company is responsible.
so mr. murdochs, both, need to own what has happened in their organization. the culture is clearly broken. there are so many other comments like that. >> right. let's go round, we will stay with you, allison. briefly, do you think now that rebekah brooks' task is much more difficult? she's been hung out to dry by that very statement at the end of rupert murdoch, those responsible, i knew not what was happening, he says, but there were those who were responsible. >> it's everyone's fault. >> one of the things that's interesting about this situation, richard, is if you think about miss brooks' history, she is born and bred within the stable of news international, so in terms of propagating a culture that is abiding by these code of ethics we have heard countless times over the course of the last few
hours, there are processes, codes of conduct, there are rules, but actually, where has the enforcement actually been made to make sure those rules are abided by by senior leaders in this business. from what i've heard today, i can't actually say that the company is showing evidence of that. >> jeffrey, let me turn to you briefly. for our viewers in the united states, on the 9/11 question, murdoch quite clear about nothing happened, but james murdoch, far more equivocating on that. i don't have any information about that, we're looking into that. do you think that what they said about 9/11 victims will be pacified today? >> no. not at all. because their strategy today, rupert murdoch's strategy was to say i saw no evil, i heard no evil, everyone lied to me, i was kept in the dark. this is just 1% of my vast
corporation, i'm not responsible. everyone else is responsible, i'm not. so the question becomes live, did glenn mulcare who hacked into the relatives' phones of their sons killed in afghanistan, killed in terrorist operations, it would seem to make sense that at this time, logically, he might well have hacked in to the 9/11 relatives or at least the british relatives of 9/11 to get a grief story, not a public interest story, but a grief story. now, the stance that rupert murdoch took, and this was the most important thing, as i've said, they've admitted to paying glenn mulcare and they may still be paying him, the man who did this. they've got to look at their contract with mr. mulcare. he's the man who can say yes or no, that he did or did not hack
into the phones of 9/11 victims and he's the man who the murdochs themselves, when confronted briefly in the one shaft of light in this hearing, said maybe we're still paying him, maybe he's still on contract. ask him. let him go public. let him tell the world and tell america immediately whether he did that dreadful thing. no more dreadful than the other things that he did do of hacking into 9/11 as well as to other parents of terrorist victims. let the murdochs put him on the stand now. >> let's pause there. i hear what you're saying. we will pause there just for a moment and say to our viewers in the united states, thank you for joining us in london for the evidence of rupert murdoch and his son, james murdoch and obviously, there will be much more on cnn usa in the hours ahead. >> it's been a fascinating afternoon of questioning in london. we will reset here in the
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the most highly recommended bed in america. [ male announcer ] time to check your air conditioning? come to meineke now and get a free ac system check and a free cooler with paid ac service. meineke. we have the coolest customers. welcome back to cnn's continuing coverage of the news corp hacking scandal. it's mostly taking place in london, where a hearing took place in parliament before a parliament committee, specifically the culture, media and sports committee. we have a committee of our own who has been analyzing what has been going on there. legal analyst jeffrey toobin
joining us from new york and also howard kirtz, media analyst for cnn. gentlemen, we will talk about the testimony in a second, but first, the drama which came right towards the end of this hearing, when there was a disruption, and this took place. a man apparently carrying a styrofoam plate and shaving cream plastered it directly on the face of rupert murdoch, the chairman of the corporation. i guess the question that everyone is asking in that room, how, how did this happen? >> you know, one of the themes of this story is the incompetence of scotland yard. the head of scotland yard has left, the deputy to scotland yard has left and the incompetence of london's authorities was very much on display in that hearing room. there are only 50 seats in that room. that's not wembley stadium or
yankee stadium. that is a small room. the idea that the authorities there could not keep an assault and that's what this was, an assault, from taking place is just completely outrageous and the people who run parliament security ought to be absolutely ashamed of themselves. >> you mentioned this isn't wembley stadium but the man in custody getting his face wiped by the police looks like he was attending a sporting event. certainly stood out from the suits and the business attire that we saw. we know from our producer in the room that this man came from the back of the room, had a bag, opened up the bag. this all taking place while everybody watched. it seems inconceivable that that could happen. >> you know, all of us in the united states are unhappily used to going through metal detectors, having people check our belongings, but if there was ever a room where the police
should have taken the time to investigate people carrying large bags and again, there were only 50 seats in that room, the incompetence and real danger that people were exposed to here is breathtaking. people talk about the pie in the face as if it's a joke and bill gates has had a pie in the face. this is very serious stuff. a pie in the face could easily be a knife, could easily be a brick, and you know, rupert murdoch's an 80-year-old man. i just think this was completely scandalous and outrageous that the people who run parliament allowed this to take place. >> we'll certainly be hearing about his very young wife, who stood up to his defense and actually took a swat at this guy. we'll be hearing about that later. let's get to the testimony itself. i want to keep you just for a second to talk about legalese, whether or not this scandal that has been mostly in the uk comes to the u.s., and the question is
were 9/11 victims hacked, was jude law, the actor, hacked on american soil. the answers given were a little i thought nuanced. >> yeah. the theme of both james and especially rupert murdoch's testimony was we are outraged, we had no idea this was going on. so in terms of the question, were 9/11 victims hacked, was jude law hacked, was the same answer. well, we don't think so. we certainly didn't approve it. but if it did, we didn't know about it. the theme of this testimony was ignorance of all wrongdoing. frankly, i didn't think the members of parliament were very successful in breaking down that defense. i thought the questioning was as bad as the typical congressional hearing and that's pretty bad. >> howard, jeffrey, hold on one second. i apologize.
but that questioning, bad as it may be, is back under way. this, rebekah brooks, former editor of the newspaper in question. >> -- systemic corporate illegality by news international. would you accept now that that is not correct? >> thank you, mr. chairman. firstly, just before i answer that question, i would like to add my own personal apologies to the apologies that james and rupert murdoch have made today. clearly, what happened at the "news of the world" and certainly when the allegations of voice intercepts, voicemail intercepts of victims of crime is pretty horrific and abhorrent. i just wanted to reiterate that. i also was very keen to come here and answer questions today and as you know, i was arrested and interviewed by the police a
couple of days ago so i have legal representation here just so i don't impede those criminal proceedings, which you would expect. but i intend to answer everything as openly as i can and not to use that if at all possible. i know you had a briefing around the same. >> we are grateful for that. so perhaps i could invite you to comment on whether or not you now accept that the statement that "news of the world" journalists had not intercepted voicemails or invited investigators to do so is untrue. >> again, as you heard over the last few hours, the fact is that since the sienna miller documents came into our possession the end of 2010, that was the first time the senior management of the company at the
time had actually seen some documentary evidence actually relating to a current employee. i think that we acted quickly and decisively. when we had that information, as you know, it was our document, our evidence that opened up the police inquiry in 2011, in january, and since then, we have admitted liability on the civil cases, endeavored to settle as many as possible. we've appointed sir charles gray so that victims of phone hacking, if they feel they want to come directly to us and don't want to incur expensive legal costs, they can come directly and be dealt with very swiftly. as you know, the court process is taking its time and those cases aren't going to be heard until i think january 2012 so
the compensation scheme is there in order for people to come forward. of course there were mistakes made in the past but i think and i hope that you will agree since we saw the evidence at the end of december, we have acted properly and quickly. >> so until you saw the evidence which was produced in the sienna miller case, you continued to believe that the only person at the "news of the world" who had been implicated in phone hacking was clive goodman? >> i think just the sequence of events, so in 2009, i think was the first time that all of us and i know some members of the committee have spent a long time on this story and looking at the whole sequence of events, so i know you all know it pretty well, but just to reiterate, in 2009, when we heard about when the gordon taylor story appeared in "the guardian" i think that's
when information unraveled, but very, very slowly. we had conducted many internal investigations. i know you spent a lot of time talking to james and rupert murdoch about it. but we had been told by people at the "news of the world" at the time that consistently denied any of these allegations in various internal investigations. it was only when we saw the sienna miller documentation that we realized that -- the severity of the situation. just to point out, one of the problems of this case has been our lack of visibility. part of the drip-drip effect of this is because we only see it during a civil procedure. >> but it is now your view, on
the basis of that evidence, you were lied to by senior employees? >> well, i think unfortunately, because of the criminal procedure, i'm not sure that it's possible for me to infer guilt until those criminal proceedings have taken place. >> but i won't be able to do it today because you are facing criminal proceedings so i'm going to be narrow in my questioning. when did you sack tom crone? >> we didn't sack tom crone. what happened with tom crone, when we made the very regrettable decision to close "news of the world" after 168 years, tom crone has predominantly been the "news of the world" lawyer. his status is now legal manager because of the situation at the "news of the world" he predominantly spent most of his time, in fact, pretty much 99% of his time on the "news of the world" and the rest of the company and the rest of the
titles, we had appointed new lawyers and there wasn't a job for tom once we closed the "news of the world" and he left. >> someone is still dealing with the "news of the world" legal cases, though, presumably. >> yeah, the civil cases are being dealt with by, like i said, the first one is the standard's management committee we set up. you have seen announcements on that recently. i won't go over it. i know james and rupert talked about it. but also, we have some test cases coming up before the judge in january and there are people dealing with it. but tom crone's role was a hands-on legal manager of the "news of the world" and obviously when we closed the paper, there wasn't a job there. >> i must have misunderstood what james murdoch said. he implied that you sacked him. but it's been a busy day.
as a journalist and editor of "news of the world" and "the sun" how extensively did you work with private detectives? >> i think on "the sun," not at all. when i was editor of the "news of the world" as you know, i came before this committee just as i became editor of "the sun" in relation to privacy and i think back then we answered extensively questions about the use of private detectives across fleet street. as you know, a chart was published of which i can't remember where the "news of the world" was on it. i think it was fourth. i think "the sun" on the table was below "take a break" magazine. but certainly, the top five was the observer, guardian, news of the world, daily mail -- >> to answer my question -- >> can i just instruct, i used to work for "the observer" but
left in 2001. "the observer" was not in the top four. >> top six, then. it was on the table. >> just to answer my question, you extensively worked with private investigators, is that the answer? >> no. what i said was that the use of private detectives in the late '90s and 2000 was a practice of fleet street and after operation motor man, fleet street actually reviewed this practice and in the main, the use of private detectives was stopped. don't forget at the time, as you are aware, it was all about the data protection, data protection act and changes to that which were made. that's why we had the committee in 2003. >> just for the third time, how extensively did you work with private detectives? >> the "news of the world" employed private detectives like most newspapers in fleet street. >> it's fair to say you were aware of and approved payments to private detectives?
>> i was aware the "news of the world" used private detectives under management, yes. >> so you would approve payments to them? >> that's not how it works but i was aware that we used them. >> who would have approved the payments? >> so the payment system in a newspaper which has been discussed at length is very simply the editor's job is to acquire the overall budget for the paper from the senior management. once that budget is acquired, it is given to the managing editor to allocate to different departments. each person in that department has a different level of authorization. but the final payments are authorized by the managing editor, unless there is a particularly big item, a set of photographs or something that needs to be discussed on a wider level, then the editor will be brought in. >> so payments would have been
discussed to private detectives with you? >> not necessarily, no. we're talking 11 years ago. he may have discussed payments to me but i don't particularly remember any incidents. >> you don't remember whether you would have discussed any payments at all? >> no. i didn't say that. i said in relation to private detectives. i was aware the "news of the world" used private detectives, as every paper on fleet street did. >> so you don't recall whether you authorized payments -- >> the payments of those, the payments of private detectives would have gone through the managing editor's office. >> you can't remember whether he ever discussed it with you? >> i'm sorry? >> you can't remember whether he ever discussed it with you? >> i can't remember if we ever discussed an individual payment. no. >> okay. in your letter to us in 2009, you said that you did not recall meeting glenn mulcare. you will appreciate that this is an inadequate answer under the circumstances. we require a specific response to our questions. did you ever have any contact,
directly or through others, with glenn mulcare? >> none whatsoever. >> would your former diary secretary michelle be able to confirm that? >> michelle? >> former diary secretary? >> i've had a p.a. for 19 years. >> okay. would your p.a. be able to confirm that? >> absolutely. >> has she held your diary for the last 19 years? >> no, she probably doesn't. we don't keep back 19 years. but she may have something from back then, i don't know. >> would it be in a paper format or electronic format? >> i never met mr. mulcare. >> i'm talking about your diary. is it electronic or paper format? >> it would have been on a paper format until very recently. >> okay. you think glenn mulcare would deny that he ever met you? >> i'm sure he would. although i mean -- yes. it's the truth. >> okay. were you aware of the arrangement news group newspapers had with mr. mulcare while you were editor of the
"news" and the "sun"? >> no. i didn't know he was one of the detectives used, no. >> you didn't know he was on the payroll? >> no. in fact i first heard his name in 2006. >> did you receive any information that originated from glenn mulcare or his methods? >> what, to me? >> you. >> to me personally? >> you as editor. did anyone bring you information as a result of his methods? >> i know it seems entirely appropriate question but i can only keep saying the same answer. i didn't know glenn mulcare -- i never heard the name until 2006. there were other private investigators that i did know about and had heard about, but he wasn't one of them. >> now that you know what you know, do you suspect that you might have received information on the basis of stuff gathered by -- >> now i know what i know is that, i mean, this is one of the difficulties.
obviously i know quite an extensive amount now, particularly the last six months of investigating this story, and glenn mulcaire, i'm aware, worked on and off for "news of the world" i think in the late '90s and continued through until 2006, when he was arrested. so obviously, if he worked for the "news of the world" for that time, he was involved and i think, i think the judge said in 2007, which again, we may disagree with that now, but the judge said in 2007 when glenn mulcaire was convicted that he had a perfectly legitimate contract with the "news of the world" for research and investigative work, and the judge said that i think quite repeatedly throughout the trial. so that's what i can tell you. >> did you have any contact directly or through others with jonathan reese? >> no. >> do you know about jonathan
reese? >> i do, again, i heard a lot recently about jonathan reese. i watched the panorama program as we all did. he wasn't -- he wasn't a name familiar with me. i am told that he rejoined the "news of the world" in 2005, 2006, and he worked for the "news of the world" and many other newspapers in the late 1990s. that's my information. >> do you find it peculiar that having received a sentence for a serious criminal offense, he was then rehired by the paper? >> it does seem extraordinary. >> do you know who hired him? >> no, i don't. >> do you know who signed his contract? >> no. i'm sorry. >> have you conducted an investigation for six months, did you not take the time to find out? >> the investigation we have been conducting in the six months has been particularly around the interception of
voicemails, as you know. the managements and standards committee at news international are going to look at jonathan reese and we already do have some information, but as to the conclusion of that investigation, i do not know. >> what information do you have? >> we have information that as i said, that jonathan reese worked for the newspapers, many newspapers on fleet street in the late '90s and then was rehired by the "news of the world" sometime in 2005. >> do you know what he was doing at that time? >> in? >> 2005-6? >> i don't, i'm sorry, no. >> did you not ask? >> i didn't know they had rehired him. i only found that out recently. >> did you not wonder what he did in 2005-6 given that you've got a hacking scandal breaking around you? >> absolutely, and i've had the information that panorama have, that jonathan reese worked as a private investigator in the panorama program it said
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