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Hacking scandal: James Murdoch quits UK newspaper biz

NYC-based son of Rupert flees News International

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James Murdoch has quit as executive chairman at News International.

The publishing giant, owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, has been under intense scrutiny after allegations of widespread phone-hacking and illegal payments to police emerged last year.

By July 2011, the company's 168-year-old Sunday redtop NotW was shuttered and various execs, including one-time editor of the tabloid and more recently NI's boss, Rebekah Brooks, were forced out as News Corp attempted some damage limitation.

Since then, Scotland Yard cops have continued to arrest suspects that have included journalists, editors, private investigators and serving police officers under Operation Tuleta, Op Weeting and Op Elveden. In the past few weeks, investigations - backed by News Corp - have led to the arrests of hacks working at Murdoch's flagship tabloid The Sun.

No charges have yet been brought against any of the individuals cuffed by Met officers.

James Murdoch - once viewed as the heir to his father's media empire - moved to New York after quitting the board of NI subsidiary News Group Newspapers, which publishes titles that include The Sun and The Times.

Rupert Murdoch said of his son:

He has demonstrated leadership and continues to create great value at Star TV, Sky Deutschland, Sky Italia and BSkyB.

Now that he has moved to New York, James will continue to assume a variety of essential corporate leadership mandates, with particular focus on important pay-TV businesses and broader international operations.

Current NI CEO Tom Mockridge will now report to News Corp president and COO Chase Carey, said the company. Meanwhile, News International's replacement to NotW - The Sun on Sunday - went on sale last weekend. ®

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