A woman has been arrested in West Yorkshire by police investigating allegations of phone hacking, Scotland Yard confirmed this morning.
The arrest was made by the Metropolitan police’s Operation Weeting team, which was set up when Scotland Yard relaunched its inquiry into phone hacking at the News of the World in January.
This latest arrest follows three others made this year as part of the new investigation, the first two at the beginning of April and the third later in the month.
According to a statement from Scotland Yard the woman, 39, was arrested on suspicion of conspiring to intercept mobile phone voicemail messages and was taken to a West Yorkshire police station for questioning.
The BBC reports that owner of the News of the World, News International, had issued a statement saying the arrest “did not relate to a current employee or a former full-time staff member”.
We have been co-operating fully with the police inquiry since our voluntary disclosure of evidence reopened the police investigation. Since then we have been determined to deal with these issues both on the criminal and civil side. In April we admitted liability in several civil cases and we are attempting to bring these to a fair resolution.”
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Journalists at the Manchester Evening News have responded to the news that photographer Sean Wilton was arrested after taking pictures of an incident near to the city’s magistrates’ court on Monday.
According to a report by MEN Wilton was later released, after being what the police termed “de-arrested”.
“I tried to explain I wasn’t obstructing and was just doing my job, but to no avail,” Wilton says in the report. “When I tried to speak to him about the situation, he arrested me for breach of the peace. As professional photographers, we do try to conduct ourselves as professionally as possible.”
In a statement (attributed to mother of the chapel Bethan Dorsett) his colleagues in the NUJ MEN chapel said its photographers always abide by industry codes of conduct.
To be treated in such a way by police is completely unacceptable and very worrying. Either police officers do not understand our rights and responsibilities or they sometimes choose to ignore them – either is disturbing and suggests some education would be useful. We are sure the NUJ and MENMedia would be more than happy to discuss and clarify these matters with the police.
The police issued the following statement:
A photographer was arrested to prevent a breach of the peace and on suspicion of obstructing a police officer. Officers brought the situation under control and the photographer was de-arrested and subsequently released.