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Coulson told editor: 'Do his phone'

Source BBC News@

Andy Coulson arrives at courtEx-News of the World editor Andy Coulson denies phone hacking and corrupt payment charges

Ex-News of the World editor Andy Coulson told a journalist investigating a story on television celebrity Calum Best to "do his phone", a court has heard.

Mr Coulson emailed the instruction to his head of news, Ian Edmondson, Andrew Edis QC told the Old Bailey.

This was because they feared a rival may get the story, the prosecutor said.

Mr Coulson and Mr Edmondson deny charges, including conspiracy to intercept communications.

Mr Edis said the now-closed NoW was investigating Calum Best, who was thought to be the father of a child with a woman who was willing to sell the story.

The NoW wanted the story as an exclusive and were paying the woman a lot of money, but were worried that Mr Best - son of footballer George Best - might "leak" the story to their competition, the court heard.

Following an email discussion on the matter, Mr Coulson sent Mr Edmondson a message which read: "Do his phone."

"What does that mean?" Mr Edis asked the jury.

He added the evidence against Mr Edmondson was "overwhelming".

The court was also told that journalists at the paper used hacking as a "perfectly rational but entirely illegal" way of standing up stories.

Reporters would receive a tip-off about a story, and then use surveillance and phone hacking to check whether it was true before confronting those involved.

Alleged targets of the phone hacking included former home secretary Charles Clarke, actors Jude Law and Sienna Miller, and former aide to Prince William and Prince Harry, Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, the jury heard. The list also included Lord Archer, cook Delia Smith, and model Abi Titmuss.

Mr Edis told the jury that a hairdresser called Laura Rooney had her phone hacked, even though she had no connection with England striker Wayne. They had thought she was related to him, Mr Edis said.

Mr Coulson and Mr Edmondson are among eight defendants - including former Sun editor Rebekah Brooks - who deny a range of charges at the Old Bailey.

The court heard on Wednesday that three former News of the World journalists, who are not on trial, and private investigator Glenn Mulcaire had pleaded guilty to phone-hacking charges.

The trial continues.

Đăng ký: Tieng Anh Vui

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