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Met calls in outsiders over hacking

Scotland Yard's incoming boss has called in an outside force to review the inquiry into phone hacking at the News of the World.

Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe considered it best practice to ask Durham Police to look at the Met's Operation Weeting due to the sensitive nature of the case, police said.

The revelation comes after Britain's top police officer said press and police relationships had "gone too far" as he called for an era of transparency and austerity.

Durham's chief constable Jon Stoddart will lead the review following the request from Mr Hogan-Howe.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: "We can confirm that the Metropolitan Police Service has asked an outside police service to conduct a review of Operation Weeting."

It was instigated by Mr Hogan-Howe while he was acting deputy commissioner, the spokesman added. Mr Stoddart will report back to the Met in "due course".

The review was announced as Mr Hogan-Howe vowed to reset the boundaries between police and media in the wake of the scandal.

Fresh guidance would be issued for officers associating with journalists at the conclusion of several inquiries, Mr Hogan-Howe said.

Addressing members of the Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA) for the first time since landing the £260,000-a-year job, he said: "I don't think anyone is going to argue that the police service should not have a relationship with the media.

"But it's clear that this relationship needs to have a resetting of the boundaries between us and how we manage that interface."


From Belfast Telegraph