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Detective on phone-hacking probe team is arrested

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A police officer working on Scotland Yard's investigation into alleged phone-hacking at the now-defunct Sunday tabloid the News of the World was arrested by cops from the anti-corruption unit of the Metropolitan police late last week.

The Met said that on Thursday 18 August they cuffed "a serving MPS officer from Operation Weeting on suspicion of misconduct in a public office relating to unauthorised disclosure of information as a result of a proactive operation".

They didn't release the name of the officer, who was described as a 51-year-old male detective constable, and Scotland Yard only confirmed he had been arrested after releasing the man on bail until 29 September, pending further inquiries.

The officer was suspended from his job on Friday (19 August).

"I made it very clear when I took on this investigation the need for operational and information security. It is hugely disappointing that this may not have been adhered to," said Deputy Assistant Commissioner Sue Akers, who is in charge of Operation Weeting.

"The MPS takes the unauthorised disclosure of information extremely seriously and has acted swiftly in making this arrest," she added.

Meanwhile, a 35-year-old man was released on Friday, after being in police custody on suspicion of conspiring to unlawfully intercept voicemails.

He was bailed to return at a yet-to-be-determined date in October.

Reports suggested that former NotW features writer Dan Evans was the man arrested then bailed by police on Friday.

James Desborough, who joined the Sunday tabloid as a showbiz reporter in 2005 before being promoted to Hollywood editor in 2009, was arrested last Thursday as part of the Operation Weeting probe. ®

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