الأربعاء , أغسطس 4 2021

Brooks cleared in hacking trial

Andy Coulson and Rebekah BrooksAndy Coulson and Rebekah Brooks: Denied all charges

Ex-News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks has been cleared of all charges in the phone-hacking trial.

Former News of the World editor Andy Coulson was found guilty at the Old Bailey of conspiring to hack phones.

The jury found Mrs Brooks not guilty of conspiracy to hack voicemails, two counts of conspiracy to pay public officials and two counts of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

She and Coulson both denied all charges against them.

They were among seven on trial at the Old Bailey.

An emotional Mrs Brooks was taken away by the court matron on hearing the verdicts.

BBC political correspondent Robin Brant was in court as the verdicts were read out on the 138th day of the trial.

He said Coulson stood with his hands behind his back and showed “absolutely no emotion” as the verdict was returned.

Mrs Brooks appeared to mouth “thank you” to the jury and also held the hand of her former personal assistant Cheryl Carter, who looked close to tears.

Charlie Brooks, the husband of the former News International chief executive, also showed “virtually no emotion”.

There was dead silence in court on instruction of the judge as the verdicts were delivered by the jury forewoman. Some 70 people were present in the room at the time.

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