Scotland Yard scuppers Andy Coulson phone tapping investigation

Andy Coulson is the former News of the World editor under whose watch his royal reporter Clive Goodman and his private eye legman Glenn Mulcaire tapped into the phones of members of the Royal Family and other celebs including Max Clifford and PFA boss Gordon Taylor.

Goodman and Mulcaire were sent to jail while Coulson, denying any knowledge of these activities, still felt obliged to resign.

Coulson is now the coalition government’s director of communications.

Scotland Yard, aka the Metropolitan Police, said initially that there was no evidence that the wrongdoing went any further than Goodman and Mulcaire, then changed its mind when the New York Times produced an extensive report on the affair, quoting former News of the World reporters and executives saying that Coulson knew everything that was going on, an allegation he denied under oath in court this week in a separate perjury case.

So the sleuths at Scotland Yard re-opened the case but chose to interview the NYT informant as suspects, meaning that anything they said could incriminate them and lead to a spell at Her Majesty’s Pleasure, akin to that enjoyed by Goodman and Mulcaire but without News International to look after them.

So, naturally, they chose to say nothing or as little as possible.

And director of public prosecutions Keir Starmer, hardly the Elliot Ness de nos jours, has decided that there is no case for Coulson or indeed anyone else at the NoW to answer.

A result for the Yard then. Although hardly the finest hour for British justice or public life.

You May Also Like

About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.