Rebekah Brooks' Computers Still Held Amid Report of $2.7 Million News Corp. Severance
The former News International chief executive remains key in Scotland Yard's phone hacking and corruption investigation.
Former chief executive of News Corporation's News International Rebekah Brooks, who was arrested on suspicion of corruption two days after her July resignation, banked a generous severance package.
Just shy of the British Parliament's Thursday re-questioning of her former boss James Murdoch, The Guardian reports she received a £1.7 million pay-off, an office and two-years' worth of chauffeur service from the British media empire.
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Brooks, who was the editor of News of the World from 2000 to 2003 and a lieutenant to Rupert Murdoch, is suspected of being a key player in phone hacking and corruption scandal which has beleaguered News Corp. She was held for questioning for 12 hours by police in July, and though she hasn't been questioned further, two of her computers remain in Scotland Yard custody.
The Independent reports a laptop and iPad, belonging to Brooks and found in trash bin near her London home this summer, remain part of ongoing inquiries into Brooks' suspected involvement, despite her husband Charlie Brooks saying they would be returned "forthwith" more than three months ago.
Labour Member of Parliament Tom Watson, who will be part of Thursday's re-questioning of Murdoch, spoke about Brooks' continued role in the scandal after report of her severance emerged, adding the news will play a role in the proceedings.
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"It is remarkably curious that such an generous package is given to Ms Brooks when others have been cut loose," he said. "It is almost as if she hasn't really left the company. I am sure Mr Murdoch will want to explain the decision to his shareholders."
Up until the Friday arrest of a Sun editor, the defunct News of the World had been the only News Corp. publication formally involved in the phone hacking and corruption investigation.
Brooks also served as editor of The Sun from 2003 to 2009.