Coulson was prime minister David Cameron's former director of communications and a NotW editor; other defendants include the paper's former managing editor and Brooks’ husband
The trial of eight News of the World employees and their associates charged with phone hacking and related offenses began in London's Old Bailey court on Monday.
Rebekah Brooks, once CEO of Rupert Murdoch's News International, was editor of News of the World during the time the prosecution alleges reporters hacked into phones and bribed public officials. News of the World shut down in July 2011. Brooks resigned from News International that month and was arrested two days later.
Being tried along with Brooks are Andy Coulson, prime minister David Cameron's director of communications until January 2011 and NotW editor from 2003 until 2007; Cheryl Carter, Brooks’ former secretary; Ian Edmondson, former head of news; Clive Goodman, former royal correspondent; Mark Hanna, News International's head of security; Stuart Kuttner, former managing editor, and Brooks’ husband, Charlie, a racehorse trainer.
In the wake of the hacking scandal, Murdoch split his News Corporation into two companies: News Corp, which manages the publishing arms, and the entertainment and broadcast-focused 21st Century Fox. Murdoch has repeatedly denied any knowledge of wrongdoing by his employees.
All eight have plead not guilty. The trial is expected to last until April 2014.
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