News International say it will now pay Mulcaire damages

News International will pay legal damages incurred by private investigator Glenn Mulcaire in cases where it can be proved that he was instructed to hack phones by News of the World staff, the company has confirmed.

News Corporation first admitted paying Mulcaire’s legal fees after his conviction for phone-hacking in 2007 during James and Rupert Murdoch’s appearance before the House of Commons culture committee on 19 July.

The next day it cancelled the arrangement with immediate effect, resulting in Mulcaire taking legal action against the company on 17 August.

News Corp subsidiary News Group Newspapers said it was ‘vigorously defending those proceedings”, but acknowledged that in April of this year it had conceded that it was ‘vicariously liable’for Mulcaire’s actions.

In his letter to the culture committee Murdoch said: ‘This admission was made, and will be made, in cases where it is apparent that Mr Mulcaire had acted on instruction from News of the World staff.

‘I understand this means that, as a matter of law, if Mulcaire’s actions result on News Group Newspaper being obliged to pay damages, it will so so”.

  • To contact the Press Gazette newsdesk call 020 7936 6433 or email pged@pressgazette.co.uk

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