Former News of the World chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck today insisted that he took “no part” in the matter which led to his sacking.
Thurlbeck, who was arrested in April by Scotland Yard detectives investigating phone hacking at the now-defunct Sunday tabloid, was fired earlier this month.
In a strongly-worded statement he vowed to fight his unfair dismissal claim against publishers News International “to the end”.
Thurlbeck’s alleged role in the phone hacking scandal has been closely scrutinised after details emerged of an email sent in June 2005 which was headed “for Neville” and contained transcripts of illegally intercepted voicemail messages.
The email, which surfaced in April 2008, seemed to contradict News International’s previous stance that hacking was confined to a single “rogue reporter”.
Thurlbeck, 49, alleged today that his former employers withheld the reason for his dismissal from him for nearly a month.
He said he found out why he was sacked from Scotland Yard, but for legal reasons did not reveal any details.
In a statement issued by his law firm, DWF, he continued: “I took no part in the matter which has led to my dismissal after 21 years of service.
“I say this most emphatically and with certainty and confidence that the allegation which led to my dismissal will eventually be shown to be false.
“And those responsible for the action, for which I have been unfairly dismissed, will eventually be revealed.”