Significant: Sun admits hacking Labour MP’s phone


12:16 pm - March 18th 2013

by Sunny Hundal    


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Today, the Sun newspaper apologised in the High Court for accessing personal information on a stolen mobile phone belonging to a Labour MP, according to the BBC.

Here’s what happened.

Labour MP Siobhain McDonagh’s phone was stolen in October 2010 and she immediately reported it to the police.

In June 2012, she is informed by the police that the Sun newspaper accessed texts from her stolen phone not long after it was stolen.

Today, the Sun newspaper did not admit to the theft of the phone itself, but will pay the MP “very substantial damages” because they admitted to accessing those texts.

This story is important because the Sun editor in 2010, when they accessed text messages from a stolen phone, was Dominic Mohan.

He is still the Sun editor.

I think Tom Watson is also thinking the same thing.

Update 1: a Labour MP now calls for him to go.

Update 2: Guess who said this?

Under my editorship, I think ethics have played a strong role and hugely influence my decision-making.

That was Dominc Mohan’s evidence to the Leveson inquiry, almost a year after they accessed an MP’s stolen phone.

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About the author
Sunny Hundal is editor of LC. Also: on Twitter, at Pickled Politics and Guardian CIF.
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Reader comments


No real surprise, but when you own the Prim Minister, and he has ruled out any action you can go back to your bad old ways. The best banana republic money can buy.

Isn’t there a law about handling stolen goods

@2. P. Diddy: “Isn’t there a law about handling stolen goods?”

There is no suggestion that The Sun was involved with direct theft of the phone. But somehow the newspaper got hold of it and, having identified the owner, did not restore it to her. There is definitely something for lawyers to attach their teeth and a criminal prosecution is imperative.

Whatever Leveson said, whatever deals are stitched up between party leaders, this story isn’t about press freedom or public interest.

Justice requires that all (everyone implicated with hanging onto this phone) are investigated. I don’t care about the cost. I just want to know that they are doing community justice and have a criminal record.

It is really important to return to a fundamental of the Leveson enquiry: newspaper employees committed criminal acts.

That was my point Charlieman.
A point which the likes of Cohen and his followers keep ignoring.

I was merely making it more explicit, Mr/Ms Diddy…

> this story isn’t about press freedom

Except that the defenders of Murdoch’s criminal empire have now pretty much explicitly resorted to defining “freedom” as absolute licence. The press is unfree unless it is allowed to break any and all laws at will.


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    […] It has now paid damages to the tune of £50,000 for admitting to this. This happened in October 2010, when the current editor Dominic Mohan was still running the newspaper. […]

  2. OFPolitico – the new independent regulator for politicians » 21stCenturyFix.org.uk

    […] in #hackgate land, it could just as easily lead us to a useful downsizing of the existing and perniciously cosy nexus of politicians, the media and/or […]





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