Actress Sienna Miller turns up the heat on News of the World for phone hacking

The 29-year old British actress, probably best known for her on-off relationship with fellow actor Jude Law, is an unlikely nemesis for the News of the World but her plucky decision to sue the tabloid newspaper for allegedly hacking into her phone in 2005 has put it, owner News Corporation and current and former executives including Downing Street director of communications Andy Coulson well and truly in the hot seat.

The paper has suspended assistant editor (in effect news editor) Ian Edmondson after a judge ordered the release of court documents which appeared to indicate that he had commissioned ‘private eye’ Glenn Mulcaire to hack into her phone. Mulcaire and former NoW royal correspondent Clive Goodman were jailed in 2007 for phone hacking.

Andy Coulson has always denied (including under oath) that he had anything to do with the phone hacking even he felt obliged to resign when Goodman and Mulcaire were jailed.

Other journalists are surprised (shall we say) that he didn’t know what his royal correspondent, let alone his news editor, were up to.

Another person whose trousers are probably about to sizzle is coalition government prime minister David Cameron. Cameron decided to hire Coulson as his director of communications in the full knowledge that he had resigned from the NoW over the phone hacking scandal.

Cameron knows enough hacks well enough to have been aware of the dangers inherent in the appointment. For a while News Corporation seemed to be succeeding in keeping the lid on the case by dumping Goodman and Mulcaire and settling out of court with other celebs including publicist Max Clifford and Professional Footballers Association boss Gordon Taylor who also had their phones hacked.

But the feisty Ms Miller is clearly made of sterner stuff.

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.