In depth: The 63 UK journalists arrested and/or charged following the News of the World hacking scandal - Press Gazette

In depth: The 63 UK journalists arrested and/or charged following the News of the World hacking scandal

This story was updated on 20 August 2014 in the light of new information from Scotland Yard. One, un-named individual, was previously counted twice after being arrested under two different inquries.

From former News of the World news editor Ian Edmondson in April 2011 to former reporter for the same paper Ryan Sabey last week – at least 63 UK journalists have been arrested and/or charged by the Met police.

Both the scale of the various investigations, and the nature of the targets, are unprecedented – see complete table at the bottom of this article. 

The arrest of a journalist for actions undertaken in the course of their job was previously a rare occurrence in this country (perhaps happening once a year at most). Now it is commonplace.

All arrests stem from the hacking scandal at the News of the World and the rock which was turned over by the dogged investigation of The Guardian’s Nick Davies.

News International and the Met Police perpetrated a cover-up form 2009 to 2011 in the face of mounting evidence from Davies that hacking extended beyond the original two convictions of Goodman and Mulcaire. 

Since then, in order to make amends, the Met has carried out the biggest investigation in criminal history with the full co-operation of News International (Now News UK).

The hacking arrests began with the police’s review of the evidence seized from private investigator Glenn Mulcaire during the first hacking investigation in 2006.

Hacking suspects were also identified as a result of email evidence found in the News International archives and handed over to police.

Following the closure of the News of the World in July 2011 its parent company News Corp set up a Management and Standards Committee to purge the company of any other potential wrongdoing.

Its actions resulted in many more journalists, and their sources, being arrested for potentially illegal payments to public officials: police officers, health workers, soldiers and others.

In the course of the various police investigations new evidence came to light as a result of the questioning of suspects.

Dan Evans, who hacked voicemails for the Sunday Mirror between 2003 and 2005 and the News of the World from 2005 to 2010, escaped a prison sentence in July having given evidence against former colleagues.

Sources arrested as a result of evidence provided by News Corp may have also given evidence against journalists at other papers.

The result has been that a few journalists from non News UK titles have also been arrested.

In addition to investigations into voicemail hacking and payments to public officials, police have also investigated a few alleged cases of computer hacking and of taking information from stolen mobile phones.

But this Operation Tuleta investigation appears to have largely unravelled with most of the journalists arrested under this strand now in the clear.

Many of those arrested have had to wait a year, or even two years, for police to finally decide that they will face no action.

In one case, that of former News of the World deputy editor Neil Wallis, he spent 21 months on police bail only to be cleared, later questioned again and finally told last month he will face trial on suspicion of involvement in phone-hacking.

The initial police tactic of arresting journalists in dawn raids, searching their homes in front of distressed wives and children and taking them to a police station for questioning has given way to a softer approach.

Now journalists are more likely to be questioned under caution (with no public statement made).

When these are included, it is believed than more than 100 journalists have been questioned by police on suspicion of crimes.

Looking at the 63 journalists who we know have been arrested and/or charged with a crime:

  • 28 are awaiting trial
  • 1 has accepted a caution
  • 1 had the charge dropped on health grounds
  • 19 have been cleared (told they face no further action) after a period on police bail
  • 5 have been convicted (with three jailed)
  • 3 have been found not guilty by a jury
  • 6 remain on police bail




The fact that only six individuals now apparently remain on bail suggests that the long police investigation into British journalism may be nearing its end, with the backlog finally being cleared.

But it is worth noting that in July, the Met police revealed that it still had more than 100 officers investigating journalists.

Those investigations are:

  • Hacking: Operations Weeting and Pinetree (News of the World) and Golding (Trinity Mirror)
  • Computer misuse: Sabinas, Carrizo and Kerville
  • Computer hacking: Tuleta and Kalmyk
  • Corruption of public officials: Elvedon
  • Conspiracy to pervert the course of justice: Sacha

The arrested journalists by title: (this table was updated on 17 September 2014)

All UK journalists arrested and/or charged since April 2011

The table below lists all the journalists arrested and/or charged to date. Note: * means the individual skipped the arrest stage but was questioned and then charged, CPCJ stands for conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, arrest date reads 'first arrested' because some have been arrested more than once.

Name Title Offence First arrested Charged Result
Ian Edmondson NoW Hacking, payments 05/04/2011 Yes Awaiting trial
Neville Thurlbeck NoW Hacking 05/04/2011 Yes Guilty
James Weatherup NoW Hacking 14/04/2011 Yes Guilty
Tenia Taras Freelance Hacking 27/06/2011 No Cleared
Laura Elston PA Hacking 27/06/2011 No Cleared
Clive Goodman NoW Payments 08/07/2011 Yes Awaiting trial
Andy Coulson NoW Hacking, payments, perjury 08/07/2011 Yes Guilty (hacking)
Neil Wallis NoW Hacking 14/07/2011 Yes Awaiting trial
Rebekah Brooks NoW, Sun Hacking, payments, CPCJ 17/07/2011 Yes Not guilty
Stuart Kuttner NoW Hacking 02/08/2011 Yes Not guilty
Greg Miskiw NoW Hacking 10/08/2011 Yes Guilty
James Desborough NoW Hacking 18/08/2011 No Cleared
Dan Evans NoW, Mirror Hacking, payments, CPCJ 19/08/2011 Yes Guilty
Ross Hall NoW Hacking 02/09/2011 No Cleared
Raoul Simons NoW Hacking 07/09/2011 No Cleared
Jamie Pyatt The Sun Payments 04/11/2011 Yes Awaiting trial
Bethany Usher NoW Hacking 30/11/2011 No Cleared
Lucy Panton NoW Payments 15/12/2011 Yes Awaiting trial
Mike Sullivan The Sun Payments 28/01/2012 No Cleared
Graham Dudman The Sun Payments 28/01/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Fergus Shanahan The Sun Payments 28/01/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Chris Pharo The Sun Payments 28/01/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
John Sturgis The Sun Payments 11/02/2012 No Cleared
Geoff Webster The Sun Payments 11/02/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
John Kay The Sun Payments 11/02/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Nick Parker The Sun Payments 11/02/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Virginia Wheeler The Sun Payments 01/03/2012 Yes Charges dropped health grounds
Duncan Larcombe The Sun Payments 19/04/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Clodargh Hartley The Sun Payments 25/05/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Neil Millard The Sun Payments 14/06/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Greig Box-Turnbull Daily Mirror Payments 04/07/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Justin Penrose Sunday Mirror Payments 11/07/2012 No Cleared
Tom Savage Daily Star Sunday Payments 11/07/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Rhodri Phillips The Sun Computer hacking 19/07/2012 No Cleared
Man, 37 The Sun Handling stolen phone 31/07/2012 No Cleared
Ben Ashford The Sun Handling stolen phone 07/08/2012 Yes Not guilty
Vince Soodin The Sun Payments 08/08/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Douglas Wright NoW Hacking, perjury 17/08/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Patrick Foster The Times Computer hacking 29/08/2012 No Cautioned
Bob Bird NoW CPCJ 29/08/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Alex Marunchak NoW Computer hacking 02/09/2012 No On Bail
John Coles The Sun Payments 19/09/2012 No Cleared
Tom Wells The Sun Payments 19/09/2012 Yes Awaiting trial
Chris Pollard The Sun Handling stolen phone 20/09/2012 No Cleared
Woman, 38   Payments 06/12/2012 No Cleared
Anthony France The Sun Payments 17/01/2013 Yes Awaiting trial
Matt Nixson NoW Hacking 13/02/2013 No Cleared
Rav Singh NoW Hacking 13/02/2013 No Cleared
Rachel Richardson NoW Hacking 13/02/2013 No Cleared
Jane Atkinson NoW Hacking 13/02/2013 No Cleared
Polly Graham NoW Hacking 13/02/2013 No Cleared
Jules Stenson NoW Hacking 13/02/2013 Yes Awaiting trial
James Scott Sunday People Hacking 14/03/2013 No On bail
Tina Weaver Sunday Mirror Hacking 14/03/2013 No On bail
Mark Thomas Sunday People Hacking 14/03/2013 No On bail
Nick Buckley Sunday People Hacking 14/03/2013 No On bail
John Troup* The Sun Payments 21/05/2013 Yes Awaiting trial
John Edwards The Sun Payments 21/06/2013 Yes Awaiting trial
Ben O'Driscoll* The Sun Payments 12/09/2013 Yes Awaiting trial
Man, 43 Freelance Payments 13/09/2013 No Cleared
Graham Brough* Daily Mirror Payments 26/02/2014 Yes Awaiting trial
Brandon Malinsky* The Sun Payments 26/02/2014 Yes Awaiting trial
Ryan Sabey* NoW Payments 15/08/2014 Yes Awaiting trial

Author: Dominic Ponsford

Dominic Ponsford is the editor of Press Gazette


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