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LONDON — News Corp. chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch and his son and News Corp. deputy COO James Murdoch’s appearance before the Culture Media and Sport Select Committee in Parliament Tuesday came to a dramatic halt after comedian Jonnie Marbles appeared to toss a pie or shaving cream at Murdoch.
it appears the mogul’s wife Wendi Deng Murdoch leapt to her feet and struck out at the attacker before being knocked to the ground. According to people Tweeting in the room, Deng threw the pie right back at him.
Murdoch sat motionless with flecks of white on his dark suit while news pictures showed animated police officers talking to the handcuffed attacker in the corridors outside the room.
“Rupert murdoch pied by protester. His wife slaps protester. Then she picks up pie and shoves it in his face,” tweeted Ben Fenton from the Financial Times, who was in the room.
Paul Waugh, who was also in the room, said that Deng laughed as she attacked Marbles and was much quicker than security and police in the room. CNN International reports he called Murdoch a “greedy billionaire.”
Marbles has been arrested and taken away.
The session got back under way less than 20 minutes after without any spectators or press. Murdoch removed his suit jacket.
Committee chairman Tom Watson closed the two-hour session with a compliment: “Mr. Murdoch, your wife has a very good left hook.”
When Watson thanked Rupert for giving up so much time and putting up with the “wholly unacceptable attack by a member of the public,” Rupert said: “Thank you Mr. Chairman, not a problem.”
Marbles Tweeted shortly before tossing the pie, “It is a far better thing that I do now than I have ever done before #splat ”
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