Brooks to stand trial in September alongside husband and former colleagues

The trial of former News International chief executive RebekahBrooks and fellow NI staff over allegations of phone hacking at the News of the World is to start in September.

The trial of Brooks and eight other defendants – expected to last three months – will be held at the Old Bailey, starting on September 9, Southwark Crown Court heard today.

Earlier this week Brooks, 45, denied a total of five charges of conspiracy to hack phones, conspiracy to pay public officials and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice by allegedly trying to hide evidence.

A trial centring on Operation Weeting, Scotland Yard's investigation into phone hacking, will be held.

Former Sun and News of the World editor Brooks; former NotW senior reporter James Weatherup, 57; former managing editor Stuart Kuttner, 73; and former news editor Ian Edmondson, 44, all deny conspiracy to intercept mobile phone voicemails between October 3 2000, and August 9 2006.

David Cameron's former spin doctor Andy Coulson, 45, who also previously edited the now-defunct News of the World, also denies the same charge.

Private investigator Glenn Mulcaire, 42, will appear in the same trial, facing a separate charge relating to the hacking of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler's phone, which he denies.

In the same trial, Brooks will also be tried alongside former personal assistant Cheryl Carter, 49, for conspiring to pervert the course of justice by allegedly trying to hide material from the News International archive between July 6 and 9 2011.

Brooks' racehorse trainer husband Charlie Brooks, 50, and NI head of security Mark Hanna, 50, will also appear in the same trial over a charge of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, by allegedly hiding documents and computer equipment from police between July 15 and 19 2011, a charge also faced by Brooks.

Brooks also denies two counts of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office, one between January 1 2004 and January 31 2012, and a second between February 9 2006, and October 16 2008.

The trial is expected to run until Christmas. Later linked trials will take place next year, the second of which is due to start in January.

All defendants have been granted bail, and further pre-trial hearings will take place in July.




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