Rebekah Brooks, former editor of News of the World and a favored aide to media titan Rupert Murdoch has reportedly been arrested in connection with the hacking scandal that has roiled one of the largest companies in the world.
Rebekah Brooks, former editor of the News of the World and a favored lieutenant of Rupert Murdoch, was arrested on Sunday as part of an investigation into allegations of phone hacking and bribing police, sources familiar with the situation said.
Brooks, 43, has said she was unaware of allegations that the News of the World tabloid hacked thousands of phones including that of a murdered schoolgirl.
She resigned on Friday as chief executive of News International to try to deflect pressure from the media empire of Murdoch, whose News Corp has been rocked by the crisis.
Her lawyer Dave Wilson told Reuters that Brooks went to a London police station of her own volition by pre-arranged appointment. He said she was assisting police with their inquiries and declined to comment further.
A senior News International source said the company was surprised by the arrest and had had no indication it was coming.
It is a given that there was criminal activity involved in hacking people's phones and bribing police. If the investigation reveals senior management was aware of or encouraged this behavior they should go to jail.
But let's get real here; the media establishment has been after Murdoch for decades. They have now been handed the perfect scandal to bring him down. They could never have done it through legitimate competition. So fanning the flames of what admittedly is already a big story (blown up into the scandal of the decade), is forcing Murdoch's hand on a number of fronts and it is possible that some consolidation of his holdings will be necessary for the company to survive.
Murdoch is a hard headed businessman and a realist. Even with the entire media establishment against him, he will probably survive and go on to thrive, leaving his competition in the dust as he always has.