Crown Prosecution Service announces 8 to be charged over phone hacking claims

8 people to be prosecuted over phone hacking allegations of more than 600 victims. There are more than 50 charges between them.
Those to be charged are: Rebekah Brooks, Andy Coulson, Greg Miskiw, Neville Thurlbeck, James Weatherup, Stuart Kuttner, Ian Edmonson and Glenn Mulcaire.
The charges include phone hacking to numerous well known people including: Wayne Rooney, Abi Titmuss, Jude Law, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie to name a few.

Rebekah Brooks has issued a statement since the announcement saying in part that she is “Not guilty of these charges, I am distressed and angry.”

Those guilty in the phone hacking scandal will have a sleepless night tonight

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) will announce tomorrow, 24 July 2012, at 11am outside the CPS whether or not they will be prosecuting over the phone hacking allegations.  Legal adviser Alison Levitt QC is expected to make a statement at around 11am whether anyone arrested under Operation Weeting will face prosecution.

Many high profile names are sure to be involved and I am sure from numerous newspapers including:

  • Andy Coulson former editor of The News of the World Newspaper and also former  Director of Communications for Downing Street will almost certainly be prosecuted if any prosecutions take place.
  • Rebekah Brooks – former News of the World Editor and News International chief executive.
  • Raoul Simon , deputy football editor of The Times

The Washington Post and ABC News have a breakdown of the developments in the phone hacking scandal at the following links: http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/developments-in-a-phone-hacking-scandal-involving-rupert-murdochs-news-corp/2012/07/23/gJQAr4vR4W_story.html

http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/developments-british-phone-hacking-scandal-16836811

The Telegraph has listed those involved and arrested so far at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/phone-hacking/9420326/Phone-hacking-list-of-arrests-so-far.html

G4S Messages Not Strong Enough

I was surprised by the answers of G4S Chief Executive, Nick Buckles today.  As the head of an organisation that employs over 600,000 people worldwide in security I thought his answers would have been a lot more robust and firm. He did not come across as a leader when it was the perfect opportunity to put the nation at ease and the MPs.  What I remember most about the questioning today is that one of the speakers for G4S said that they regretted signing the contract.

As a Communications person if I was working for them I would be battering them around the ears with my notepad in the car on the way back to the office.  No matter what G4S say in the coming days admitting to a shambles and regretting signing the contract is unforgivable.  For such a large organisation why are they not getting key messages sent out very often to put peoples’ minds at ease?  This is a perfect example of when there is trouble if you think keeping quiet is the best thing to do and people will all go away you are seriously mistaken.

G4S’s Main message at Westminster on Tuesday 17 July 12pm

I have been seeing a lot of news coverage on G4S at the moment and that Nick Buckles, G4S Chief Executive and Ian Horseman-Sewell, global events specialist for G4S will face MPs at Westminster on Tuesday.

I watched the Daily Politics show today and one woman was calling into question the whole organisations trust which made me almost laugh out loud. I think this whole affair has been blown out of proportion and to be quite honest the armed forces are involved and the issue is solved. However I am sure there is a question of money, what the security contract is worth and how much the organisation will have to give back for not supplying the agreed amount of staff. There has been much speculation however it is believed G4S were initially asked to supply a smaller number of security personnel but as time got closer to the Olympics they were asked if they could supply more staff.

When you think about it, offering temporary security staff 4 years in advance, I don’t think any organisation in the world can guarantee it, especially if the staff need to have very specific training and get security clearance for such a big sporting event. Personally if it was me looking to get a job working in security for the Olympics I would ask myself is it worth committing myself to a few weeks work during the Olympics and then back to unemployment straight afterwards as the amount of work is no longer needed. I could look at other jobs which offer more security to me in the form of long term employment.

As far as Tuesdays showdown with MPs seeking their 15 mins of fame by bandying together like slobbering wolves itching at the opportunity to attack G4S and point a finger. Personally I think it is more a Ra-Ra session for politicians than something that will have a positive outcome for future events. Looking at positive messages for G4S on Tuesday it would be good to look out and see if Nick Buckles mentions any of the following:

• The most important message they must get across is: G4S is committed to providing highly trained staff and will not waiver on that commitment if it endangers the safety of the public.

 • How many staff they have in the UK and how many jobs they provide.

 • The quality of their staff and the pains they go to ensure they provide the best possible service.

 I will be looking out especially to see if MPs thank G4S for their commitment to keeping the UK safe. The London Olympics is going to be a fantastic occasion with many nations going for gold and glory but what many will not see is that behind the scenes the thousands of security people ensuring each Olympic venue will be secure from evil doers.