Former News International Chief Executive Rebekah Brooks and her husband Charlie are to be charged with perverting the course of justice, it emerged in London Tuesday.

The Crown Prosecution Service confirmed they are charging Rupert Murdoch's former right hand woman in relation to the phone-hacking scandal that has rocked the British establishment and resulted in the closure of the News of the World tabloid.

Three of Brooks' staff and the News International security head have also been charged with the offense.

Brooks' comment was: We deplore this weak and unjust decision.

The couple -- alongside News International head of security Mark Hanna, chauffeur Paul Edwards, security man Daryl Jorsling and Brooks' personal assistant Cheryl Carter -- are charged with concealing material from police investigating the scandal.

Brooks and Carter are also charged with conspiring to remove boxes of evidence from the NI archives .

The charges are the first to come from the 18-month inquiry into phone hacking at the News of the World tabloid.

We have this morning been informed by the Office of the Department of Public Prosecutions that we are to be charged with perverting the course of justice, Brooks and her husband said in a statement.

After the further unprecedented posturing of the CPS we will respond later today after our return from the police station.