UK Police Questioning Ex-Murdoch Editor

Andy Coulson, UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s communications director, was interviewed Friday by Metropolitan Police over the growing British tabloid phone-hacking scandal. Three years ago, Coulson stepped down as editor of the weekly Sunday tabloid News of the World, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, after one of the paper’s reporters was convicted of illegally accessing voicemail messages left for staff members of the royal household, including some from Prince William and Prince Harry. Coulson has always denied any knowledge of allegations his reporters listened in to private conversations of royals, politicians, and stars. However, journalists who used to work for him say he knew full well what they were doing. Having this ex-Murdoch executive who’s bound so closely to Cameron’s inner circle interviewed by police will be embarrassing for the new British Prime Minister whose spinmeister has now become the story. Earlier this week former Columbia Studios boss and now House Of Lords parliamentary member David Puttnam drew attention to the close links between Cameron and Murdoch, pointing out that Rupert slipped in the back door of 10 Downing Street while BBC Director General Mark Thompson like most visitors used the front door. The British Left argues there’s a cabal between the Conservatives and Murdoch, whose News Corp’s bid to buy 100% of pay TV operator BSkyB is payback for supporting Cameron in the general election. Others point out that ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair was just as keen to keep Murdoch onside.

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