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News International knew of phone hacking in 2008, suggest documents

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Police investigate News of the World journalists over alleged phone hacking

© Rex Features / Jeff Blackler

News International knew in 2008 that phone hacking at the News of the World went beyond a single "rogue reporter", newly-released documents suggest.

The House of Commons culture select committee today published a number of papers relating to the ongoing scandal.

Included in the News International internal documents are papers pertaining to the settlement paid to then-Professional Footballers' Association boss Gordon Taylor in 2008, The Guardian reports.

According to the BBC, the documents suggest that News International knew in 2008 that its journalists were breaking the law.

Included is an email from the newspaper's former legal manager Tom Crone to its then-editor Colin Myler sent in May of that year suggesting that Taylor would succeed in his lawusit against the News of the World.

A written opinion from barrister Michael Silverleaf QC to Crone sent in June 2008 read: "There is overwhelming evidence of the involvement of a number of NGN [News Group Newspapers] journalists' in the illegal enquiries into [redacted].

"In addition there is substantial surrounding material about the extent of NGN journalists' attempts to obtain access to information illegally in relation to other individuals."

According to Press Gazette, Silverleaf also told Myler that there was a "powerful case that there is (or was) a culture of illegal information access used at NGN in order to produce stories for publication".

After the jailing of private detective Glenn Mulcaire and royal correspondent Clive Goodman in 2007, the News of the World claimed that hacking was not widespread at the paper.

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> James Murdoch to testify again before MPs next month

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