Sean Hoare, the first journalist to point a finger at Andy Coulson -- saying he was aware of the phone hacking by his News of the World staff -- has been found dead, the Guardian reported.
Hoare, who previously worked for the News of the World and the Sun with Coulson before being fired for drug and alcohol problems, is said to have been found dead in his Watford Home.
Hertfordshire police would confirm the identity, but said in a statement:
At 10:40 a.m. [July 18] police were called to Langley Road, Watford, following the concerns for the welfare of a man who lives at an address on the street. Upon police and ambulance arrival at a property, the body of a man was found. The man was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after.
The dead is currently being treated as unexplained, but not thought to be suspicious. Police investigations into this incident are ongoing.
Hoare made his first claims in a New York Times investigation into the phone-hacking allegations at the News of the World, telling the newspaper that not only did Coulson know of the phone-hacking, but that he actively encouraged his staff to intercept calls in hopes of publishing exclusive articles on celebrities.
Hoare, in a following BBC interview, said he was personally asked by Coulson -- his editor at the time -- to tap into phones.
At the time, a Downing Street spokeswoman said Coulson completely denied all allegations, saying, he never condoned the use of phone-hacking and nor do I have any recollection of incidences where phone-hacking took place.
In an interview with the Guardian last week, Hoare said he hoped the hacking scandal would lead to the cleanup of journalism on the whole, which is why he decided to speak out against his News of the World colleagues.