The investigation into phone hacking at Rupert Murdoch’s defunct News of the World has led to new charges against two of the shuttered tabloid’s editors a month after former top editor Andy Coulson was found guilty of conspiring to intercept communications in connection with the phone hacking scandal.
Neil Wallis, the former deputy editor, and former features editor, Jules Stenson, now face the same charges as Coulson, Gregor McGill, a senior lawyer with the Crown Prosecution Service in London, said in a statement Wednesday.
"The CPS has authorized the Metropolitan Police to charge Jules Stenson, former features editor of the News of the World and to summons Neil Wallis, former deputy editor of the News of the World with an offence of conspiracy to intercept communications in the course of their transmission, commonly known as 'phone hacking,'” McGill said. The former News of the World editors are expected to appear before the Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Aug. 21.
Stenson and Wallis allegedly participated in the phone hacking between January 2003 and January 2007. Murdoch closed News of the World in July 2011 in light of the scandal, which involved the tabloid’s journalists accessing the voicemails of prominent Britons, including the royal family and film stars. The hacking against then-missing teenager Milly Dowler spurred the most outrage, with the girl’s family given false hope that she was still alive because her voicemail messages were being accessed and deleted.
While Coulson, who went on to serve as British Prime Minister David Cameron’s communications chief, was found guilty of conspiracy in the phone hacking case after an eight-month-long trial, his ex-colleague, Rebekah Brooks, was cleared of the charges.