U.K. News Corp. Phone Hacking Report to Target James Murdoch (Report)

1:55 PM PST 04/30/2012 by Georg Szalai
Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

The report from a parliamentary committee is expected to condemn Murdoch and Les Hinton for misleading statements and also criticize two former high-level News of the World staffers.

LONDON - A report on the News Corp. phone hacking scandal by a U.K. parliamentary committee, scheduled to be unveiled Tuesday, will criticize Rupert Murdoch son and News Corp. deputy COO James Murdoch and former Dow Jones CEO Les Hinton, among others, the Guardian reported late Monday.

The report from the multi-party select committee on culture, media and sport will criticize James Murdoch, who used to oversee the conglomerate's News International U.K. newspaper unit as chairman. But it will not accuse him of misleading parliament about the extent of his knowledge of the hacking scandal as some had suggested, according to the paper.

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The report is expected to state though that Murdoch failed to ask the right questions to get to the root and discover the extent of phone hacking activity at the shuttered NOTW.

Some Conservatives wanted the report to stay away from criticizing Murdoch in a Monday discussion of the final wording, but they seemed to have failed, according to The Guardian.

Some of the strongest criticism will be reserved for Hinton, James Murdoch's predecessor at News International. He appeared before the parliamentary committee three times in recent years, including in 2009 when he said that phone hacking was not a lasting problem at the NOTW.

In that context, the report is expected to condemn Hinton for misleading parliament, the Guardian said. It highlighted that individuals who mislead parliament can be called to the parliament's House of Commons to apologize.

News Corp. chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch himself is not expected to be singled out. However, the corporate culture of his conglomerate's U.K. newspaper division is believed to get some negative reviews in the report.

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Also facing criticism from the parliamentary committee are former News of the World editor Colin Myler and top lawyer Tom Crone, who Rupert and James Murdoch told a media ethics panel last week were in charge of editorial standards.

Meanwhile, former NOTW editors Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson will not be called out by the report "because both have been arrested on suspicion of involvement in the intercepting of voice mail messages," the Guardian said.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com

Twitter: @georgszalai

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