The Independent has learnt the Metropolitan Police has opened an “active investigation” into the corporate liabilities of the UK newspaper group – recently rebranded News UK – which could have serious implications for the ability of its parent company News Corp to operate in the United States. One of Rupert Murdoch’s most senior lawyers has been interviewed under caution on behalf of the company and two other very senior figures have been officially cautioned for corporate offences. John Turnbull, who works on News Corp’s Management and Standards Committee (MSC) which co-ordinates the company’s interactions with the Metropolitan Police, answered formal questions from detectives earlier this year.
The development has caused pandemonium at the upper echelons of the Murdoch media empire. Shortly afterwards, executives in America ordered that the company dramatically scale back its co-operation with the Metropolitan Police.
Finally, the really serious stuff. Not just journalists but the corporate entity, with all the ramifications for US broadcasting licenses.