Private investigator Glenn Mulcaire has been ordered to provide information identifying News of the World journalists who had asked him to hack voicemail messages, the Guardian’s Nick Davies reported yesterday.
The judgment opens the door to the eventual disclosure of evidence that could have a powerful effect on News International, Scotland Yard, the Press Complaints Commission and the prime minister’s media adviser, Andy Coulson, all of whom have claimed that Mulcaire acted without any official sanction from the News of the World.
The judgement, handed down yesterday in the case of Phillips v News Group Newspapers, orders Mulcaire to provide information “relevant to the claim being brought by Nicola Phillips, a former employee of publicist Max Clifford’s company” against the News of the World in relation to allegations of phone hacking, Inforrm reports.
Mr Mulcaire sought to resist providing answers on the basis of the “privilege against self-incrimination”. Mr Justice Mann agreed that the privilege was applicable but held that the evidence would be covered by section 72 of the Senior Courts Act, which removes the privilege in inter alia, “proceedings for infringement of rights pertaining to any intellectual property or for passing off”. As a result, the judge ordered that Mr Mulcaire should provide the information.