Monday, December 19, 2011

#leveson Inquiry : Stuart Hoare -“my brother told me phone hacking was routine at The Sun”

The brother of News of the World whistleblower Sean Hoare told the Leveson Inquiry phone hacking was allegedly routine at The Sun.

Stuart Hoare told Leveson LJ about conversations he had with his late brother, Sean, during and after his time as a News International employee about phone hacking allegedly being widespread in both newspapers.

Hoare and his brother Sean had email exchanges about the alleged practices in the Sun and NoW newspapers.

He told the inquiry how Sean had been off alcohol and drugs for about 8 months before he was interviewed by the New York Times in July 2010 about phone hacking and other practices such as ‘pinging’ (finding out the exact location of someone’s phone) at the News of the World.

They also had alleged conversations about bullying – Sean told him about one reporter in particular who had issues at the NoW.

Sean died in his house, in July, of consequences of alcohol abuse, according to a coroner.
Hoare said: “The main reason I’m here today is to represent my brother and let his voice still be heard.”

The inquiry also heard from the deputy editor of the Independent on Sunday, James Hanning, who had a series of conversations with Sean Hoare in the summer of 2010.

He said Hoare told him a number of individuals at NoW, Hoare included, had hacked phones.
Hanning said he thought Hoare’s motivation to speak out – the hard time he had in his last couple of years at the NoW – did not affect his reliability.

He also said: “I saw no evidence that he was in the state I’d heard he’d been in the past. He seemed to be operating very efficiently and impressively.”

The inquiry will hear from former NoW reporter Matthew Driscoll, who won £800,000 in a bullying claim against the newspaper, in the afternoon.