Sun reporter charged with handling stolen goods and computer data offence over MP's missing mobile

Sun chief foreign reporter Nick Parker has become the second journalist to be charged under the Operation Tuleta computer hacking inquiry.

The 52-year-old has been charged with handling stolen goods and an offence under the Computer Misuse Act 1990 in relation to the alleged theft of the mobile phone of Labour MP Siobhain McDonagh in October 2010.

The phone found its way to The Sun but no story appeared.

Last month former Sun reporter Ben Ashford was charged with the same offences over another missing mobile which found its way into the hands of The Sun. In that case the paper had been contacted by a member of the public who claimed there was newsworthy information on the device.

Again no story appeared and in that case the phone is understood to have been handed in to the police.

Gregor McGill, a senior lawyer at the CPS said: “The CPS has today authorised the Metropolitan Police to charge Nick Parker with one offence of receiving stolen goods and one offence of unauthorised access to computer material.

“We have also authorised the police to charge Michael Ankers, 28 from South West London, with theft.

"Both individuals will appear before Westminster Magistrates' Court on 6 November 2013.

"When considering the file of evidence in this case, the CPS also decided there was insufficient evidence to charge one other suspect in relation to these allegations.

"May I remind all concerned that criminal proceedings against Nick Parker and Michael Ankers will now be commenced and that they have a right to a fair trial. It is very important that nothing is said, or reported, which could prejudice that trial. For these reasons it would be inappropriate for me to comment further."

The full charges are as follows:

Nick Parker is charged with two counts.

Between 17/10/10 and 21/10/10 Nick Parker dishonestly received stolen goods, namely a mobile phone belonging to Siobhain McDonagh. Contrary to section 22 Theft Act 1968.

Between 17/10/10 and 21/10/10 Nick Parker, caused a computer to perform a function with intent to secure unauthorised access to a program or data held in a computer, knowing that such access was unauthorised.  Contrary to section 1 Computer Misuse Act 1990.

Michael Ankers is charged with one count:

On or around 17 October 2010 Michael Ankers stole a mobile telephone belonging to Siobhain McDonagh. Contrary to section 1(1) Theft Act 1968.

 

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