No action against cop accused of passing phone-hack info to News International

A police officer accused of passing information about the phone-hacking investigation to a senior News International executive will face no further action.

The Crown Prosecution Service said there was “no evidence to suggest that the officer had behaved corruptly or dishonestly” during the May 2006 meeting.

The allegation relates to a meeting between a senior Met officer and a News International journalist in 2006, during which “information was imparted to the journalist about the MPS investigation into phone hacking”.

The CPS was asked to consider whether the information passed to the journalist “amounted to an offence of misconduct in a public office”.

Alison Levitt QC, Principal Legal Advisor to the Director of Public Prosecutions, said: “The purpose of the meeting was to gauge the willingness of the journalist, as a potential victim of crime, to provide a witness statement to support the ongoing prosecution.

“The evidence showed that the meeting had been convened in accordance with the MPS' victim strategy for this investigation. The evidence also showed that the nature of the matters subsequently discussed at the meeting was not such as to amount to wilful misconduct or neglect on the part of the officer, and the conduct was therefore not such as to amount to an abuse of the public's trust.

"There was no evidence to suggest that the officer had behaved corruptly or dishonestly.

"Accordingly, having reviewed the evidence carefully in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors, we have reached the conclusion that there is insufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction in this case.

"Given that there is insufficient evidence to prosecute the officer, the question of whether or not it would be in the public interest does not fall for consideration."

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