Former Government Minister Confirms He Met With Met Police Regarding Alleged Computer Hacking
News International initially denied that police were investigating Peter Hain's computer equipment.
LONDON – Former U.K. government Northern Ireland secretary Peter Hain has told The Guardian newspaper that police met him to investigate possible computer hacking by News International while in his high security cabinet post between 2005 and 2007.
His meeting with police came as part of Operation Tuleta, an operation investigating a number of allegations regarding breach of privacy, received by the Metropolitan Police since January 2011, as part of the ongoing phone and computer hacking scandal.
First reported by The Guardian newspaper, Hain’s meeting with police was challenged by News International, the former publisher of The News of The World.
The Guardian said in an email to the paper, the company’s chief executive Tom Mockridge said: “News International has been advised that Mr. Hain's computer equipment (and that of the Northern Ireland Office) was not and has not been the subject of an investigation by Operation Tuleta and there is no belief or suspicion that this equipment was hacked."
But Hain said in a letter to The Guardian that News International’s claim was incorrect.
"The Guardian story was an entirely accurate account of my interaction with Operation Tuleta,” Hain wrote in a letter to paper itself.
According to The Guardian Friday, Hain said: "I met with DI Beswick, head of Operation Tuleta, at his request last month to discuss an investigation into the possible hacking of three of my computers during my time as secretary of state for Northern Ireland. Two of these computers were issued by the Northern Ireland Office. One was my personal computer. I have provided the Met with account details for all three computers as they requested. This is a matter of national security and subject to a police investigation."
Mockridge denies that News International was involved in any activity connected with Hain's computers.
The Met, whose Operation Tuleta is one of three linked investigations into computer hacking, phone hacking and police corruption, declined to comment on the meeting with Hain.