Feeds

UK Serious Fraud Office mulls News Corp probe

'We are in touch with US feds, will assist as required'

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is considering investigating various allegations against Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.

A spokeswoman said the SFO was mulling over a letter sent to the agency by MP Tom Watson, a member of the Commons media select committee which grilled Murdoch, his son James, and ex-News International boss Rebekah Brooks yesterday.

"The SFO can confirm that it has today received a letter from Tom Watson MP calling upon the SFO to investigate certain allegations relating to News Corp," the UK's premier biz-investigations agency said in a statement.

"SFO Director Richard Alderman will give full consideration to Mr Watson's letter. The SFO is aware that the Metropolitan Police Service is conducting an investigation into alleged improper payments to police officers."

The BBC's business editor, Robert Peston, separately reported that the SFO had been in "informal" talks with the US Department of Justice, which is said to be considering an investigation into police bribery allegations against News International, sister firm of News Corp.

The SFO told The Register that it "is routinely in contact with the US authorities and will provide assistance as required".

Neither the DoJ nor the SFO have officially launched a probe into the allegations yet.

Meanwhile, a Met spokesman confirmed to The Register this morning that police inquiries were continuing with regard to events detailed in a Guardian story published on 18 July.

The Guardian reported that cops were examining a bag containing a laptop, mobile phone and paperwork found in a bin near the home of former News International chief Rebekah Brooks.

Her husband, Charlie Brooks, denied that the items belonged to his wife. Rebekah Brooks had been arrested and later released last Sunday on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications and of corruption allegations relating to illegal police payments.

Ms Brooks told MPs yesterday that she had "never paid a police officer or knowingly sanctioned payment to a police officer" during her tenure as News of the World editor between 2000 and 2003. That's a period of time when it is alleged that crime victims, celebrities and politicians routinely had their communications intercepted by people working for the now-defunct tabloid. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Why Oracle CEO Larry Ellison had to go ... Except he hasn't
Silicon Valley's veteran seadog in piratical Putin impression
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed
Remastered so hard it would be difficult or impossible to master it again
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.