Coulson and Brooks face new charge

Coulson and Brooks face new charge

Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks will be charged after an investigation into paying officials for information

Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks will be charged after an investigation into paying officials for information

First published in National News © by

Five people including former spin doctor Andy Coulson and ex-News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks are facing charges linked to alleged bribery of public officials.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) announced that Coulson and former News of the World (NOTW) royal correspondent Clive Goodman are accused of a conspiracy to pay for information that included contact details for the royal family.

Brooks and former Sun chief reporter John Kay are charged with conspiring to pay Ministry of Defence employee Bettina Jordan-Barber around £100,000 for information.

Coulson, who was editor of the NOTW, denied any wrongdoing. He said: "I am extremely disappointed by this latest CPS decision. I deny the allegations made against me and will fight the charges in court."

David Cameron's former spin doctor Coulson, 44, and Goodman face two counts of conspiracy to commit misconduct in a public office - one between August 31 2002 and January 31 2003, and the other between January 31 and June 3 2005.

They relate to the alleged request and authorisation of payments to public officials in exchange for information, including a royal phone directory known as the "Green Book". It contained contact details for the royal family and members of the household.

Brooks, Kay and Jordan-Barber face one count of conspiracy to commit misconduct in a public office between January 1 2004 and January 31 this year. That relates to allegations that Jordan-Barber was paid to provide information to The Sun newspaper.

Scotland Yard said Kay, 69, answered bail at a north London police station on Tuesday morning and was charged. Brooks was charged when she answered bail in south London. They will both appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on November 29.

There is a remaining suspect who is still being investigated in relation to the charges faced by Brooks, Kay and Barber. Prosecutors said the file passed to them by police related to two journalists and two public officials.

Operation Elveden is being run alongside two others: Operation Weeting, into allegations of phone hacking, and Operation Tuleta, an inquiry into accusations of computer hacking and other privacy breaches. Eight people including Coulson and Brooks face charges linked to an alleged conspiracy to hack phones.

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