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Glenn Mulcaire ‘blagged’ UKIP leader Nigel Farage’s voicemail codes to investigate affair claims, court told

By Press Association

Phone-hacker Glenn Mulcaire blagged Nigel Farage’s phone details in a bid to stand up whether he was having an affair, a court heard.

Mulcaire, the Old Bailey heard, requested a pin reset from Farage’s mobile provider so he could listen into the politician’s messages.

The News of the World thought the UK Independence Party leader was having an affair in Brussels with Liga Howells.

Voicemails belonging to both Farage and Howells were intercepted in 2006, while a story about their alleged affair appeared in the News of the World in April 2006.

Mulcaire has already admitted phone-hacking.

Both Farage and Howells had voicemails intercepted in 2006, with a story appearing in the NotW about their alleged affair in April 2006.

The court heard that Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballer’s Association was targeted by Mulcaire.

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Taylor was targeted in 2005 after claims that he was in an affair with PFA lawyer Joanne Armstrong.

Recordings of voice messages left on his phone were recovered from Mulcaire's home when he was arrested in 2006.

The court heard that  Armstrong's messages were also intercepted.

Later, the court heard that former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks was also "extensively hacked" and was asked by police if she would give evidence as a witness, the court was told.

Evidence was read out regarding Mulcaire's interception of the voicemails of actress Sienna Miller and her childhood friend Archie Keswick in 2005.

The court heard that the hacking had coincided with a number of stories in the NoW about Miller and ex-boyfriend Jude Law, and that Mulcaire had also hacked the nanny of Law's ex-wife Sadie Frost.

The jury was shown an entry which read "Rebekah Wade", Brooks' maiden name, among Mulcaire's notes on these targets.

Tim Hargreaves, an officer working on Scotland Yard's Operation Weeting investigation into phone hacking, told the court that Brooks had been informed she was herself "the victim of extensive hacking" due to this entry.

Jonathan Laidlaw QC, representing Brooks, also suggested that she was also asked by police to provide a witness statement.

Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks, 45, of Churchill, Oxfordshire; ex News of the World editor Andy Coulson, also 45, from Charing in Kent; former NoW head of news Ian Edmondson, 44, from Raynes Park, south west London; and the tabloid's ex-managing editor Stuart Kuttner, 73, from Woodford Green, Essex, are all on trial accused of conspiring with others to hack phones between 3 October 2000 and 9 August 2006.

Former NoW and Sun editor Brooks is also accused of two counts of conspiring with others to commit misconduct in public office – one between 1 January 2004 and 31 January 2012 and the other between 9 February 2006 and 16 October 2008 – linked to alleged inappropriate payments to public officials.

She faces another two allegations of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice – one with her former personal assistant Cheryl Carter, 49, from Chelmsford in Essex, between 6 July and 9 July 2011; and a second with her husband, Charles Brooks, and former head of security at News International, Mark Hanna, and others between 15 July and 19 July 2011.

Coulson is also facing two allegations that he conspired with former NoW royal editor Clive Goodman, 56, from Addlestone in Surrey, and other unknown people to commit misconduct in public office – between 31 August 2002 and 31 January 2003, and between 31 January and 3 June 2005.

All of the accused deny all of the charges.

The trial continues.

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