Rebekah Brooks, the former head of Rupert Murdoch's British newspaper wing and a key figure in the phone hacking crisis, is to face criminal charges over the scandal, it was announced Tuesday.
The Crown Prosecution Service said that Brooks "conspired with her husband, Charles Brooks, and others to pervert the course of justice."
Speaking at a press conference, Alison Levitt, the chief adviser to the Director of Public Prosecutions, said that Brooks and five others —her husband, her assistant, their chauffeur, their security and the head of security at News International — had all been charged. (A seventh person was arrested but is not being charged.)
She claimed that, between July 6 and 19th of 2011, Brooks and her assistant had illegally removed seven boxes of material from News International headquarters, and that the group had tried to conceal information from the police about the phone hacking scandal. The charges all stem from actions allegedly taken at the very height of the phone hacking scandal which had suddenly engulfed the entire Murdoch empire.
Levitt said that she had concluded that there was "sufficient evidence for there to be a realistic prospect of conviction" for the charges.
Brooks becomes by far the highest-profile member of the Murdoch inner circle to be criminally charged in connection with the scandal. She and the others are the first to face charges stemming from Operation Weeting, the police investigation into phone hacking that was launched in January of 2011.
Read more at the Huffington Post....