Phone-hacking jury hears voicemails left by Andy Coulson on Hannah Pawlby's mobile phone - Press Gazette

Phone-hacking jury hears voicemails left by Andy Coulson on Hannah Pawlby's mobile phone

These are two voicemail messages left by Andy Coulson on Hannah Pawlby’s mobile phone that were played to the jury at the Old Bailey today.

In the messages, Coulson claimed he wished to speak to former Home Secretary Charles Clarke urgently about an important story.

Prosecutors allege that journalists at the News of the World (NoW) accessed Pawlby's voicemails in 2005 after hearing a rumour that the pair were having an affair.

Jurors were played recordings recovered from the home of private investigator Glenn Mulcaire, of voicemails left on Pawlby's phone. (audio above)

They included two from Coulson – in the first he was heard saying that the NoW planned to run "quite a serious story" about Clarke and that he wanted to speak to him.

In message one, which lasted 37 seconds, Coulson said:

“Hello Hannah, I’m sorry to bother you direct, it’s just Andy Coulson here from the News of the World my number’s [redacted].

“I’ve got a story that I’m planning to run tomorrow, that I would really like to speak to Charles about. I wouldn’t do this in the normal course of events but it is quite a serious story and previously Charles has been very helpful with us and he has suggested that when there are these issues that pop up that we should talk directly with him, so if you could ask him to give me a call, or of course give me a call yourself and I’ll fill you in. You’ve got my number and it’s now five past one, thanks very much, bye. “

The second, much shorter message said:  “Hannah, hi, it’s Andy Coulson again here. Sorry to hassle you. It’s a quarter to three. I hope you got my messages and can you give me a call please [redacted]. Thanks.”

Pawlby told the jury she was aware of the false affair claims, and that former NoW political editor Ian Kirby said the rumours had been circulating around the newsroom.

Pawlby said: "There was no truth in the rumour."

She recalled being contacted by a Sun journalist who was working for a political gossip column in around 2006 about the claims.

"She said she had pictures of Charles and I and that we were having an affair and said that they were going to run the story and what did I say to that," Pawlby told the jury.

"I said I wasn't having an affair."

Notes made by Mulcaire, who has admitted phone hacking, included Pawlby's parents' landline number and address, the court heard, as well as the phone number of one of their friends who used to work for MI6.

Her brother's phone number was also included in the notes.

All of the defendants deny all of the charges. 
The trial resumes on Monday morning. 



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