Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

NGN asked about lawyer's children

The News of the World's publishers inquired about the price of obtaining information about the children of a lawyer for alleged phone-hacking victims, the Leveson Inquiry has heard.

Charlotte Harris described seeing documents that revealed how she was put under surveillance by News Group Newspapers (NGN) and contained private details about her family.

She said it was natural as a mother to feel "terribly uncomfortable" about the idea of people investigating her children, who were aged two and four at the time.

Ms Harris, who represents alleged hacking victims including Ulrika Jonsson, former Lib Dem MP Mark Oaten and sports agent Sky Andrew, said she was given an insight into her clients' lives after learning a private detective had spied on her.

"One of the difficulties with surveillance, and I hear this from clients but I also speak for myself, is you don't really know what happened when," she said.

"It is what you don't know that can cause stress. That in itself might be a new form of harassment to look into."

The media lawyer, of leading London firm Mishcon de Reya, told the inquiry into press standards she first learned in May that she had been placed under surveillance.

She contacted Simon Greenberg, director of corporate affairs for NGN's parent company News International, who in September informed her that he had uncovered more papers relating to what happened.

The inquiry also heard from Steven Nott, who said he tried to warn the authorities about phone hacking in 1999.

Mr Nott, a delivery driver from Cwmbran, South Wales, discovered how easy it was to access other people's voicemails remotely when he needed to pick up messages from customers while Vodafone's network was down.


From Belfast Telegraph