Phone hacking: secrecy sledgehammer | Editorial | Comment is free | The Guardian

Is the whole phone hacking story where News Corp routinely broke the law in the UK to hack phones of celebrities and regular people with apparent impunity from the authorities over? No. Now the very Metropolitan Police who failed to look into any of egregious News Corp hacking, is trying to get the Guardian to give up its sources. It was Guardian that broke the story of the phone hacking….

It beggars belief that the Metropolitan police – who, for years, declined to lift a finger against News International journalists despite voluminous evidence of criminal behaviour – should now be using the Official Secrets Act to pursue the Guardian, which uncovered the story. The Official Secrets Act is a very powerful sledgehammer and the police have no business using it to try to defeat the defences that journalists would normally rely on to prevent them – or anyone else – from trying to expose confidential sources. The only known previous attempt to use the 1989 act against a journalist – the writer Tony Geraghty – collapsed, as did a similar police threat (not using the OSA) to prosecute the Conservative MP Damian Green for “aiding and abetting” misconduct in a public office.

via Phone hacking: secrecy sledgehammer | Editorial | Comment is free | The Guardian.

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