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News of the World on phone hacking: ‘What happened to them should not have happened’

Following News International’s admission of liability on Friday in relation to some of the cases of alleged phone hacking brought against it, the News of the World yesterday published the statement for its readers to see, acknowledging its previous inquiries “failed to uncover important evidence”.

The Sunday title then went further than Friday’s statement to say that since the jailing of royal correspondent Clive Goodman and private investigator Glenn Mulcaire in 2007, for accessing voicemail messages between 2004 and 2006, “a number of individuals” have brought breach of privacy claims against the News of the World over wrongful voicemail interception during the same period, with others also threatening claims.

Evidence has recently come to light which supports some of these claims. We have written to relevant individuals to admit liability in these civil cases and to apologise unreservedly, and will do the same to any other individuals where evidence shows their claims to be justifiable.

We hope to be able to pay appropriate compensation to all these individuals, and have asked our lawyers to set up a compensation scheme to deal with genuine claims fairly and efficiently.

Here today, we publicly and unreservedly apologise to all such individuals. What happened to them should not have happened. It was and remains unacceptable.

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