Guardian reporter quizzed over UK phone hack probe
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Last Updated: Wednesday, September 07, 2011, 23:58
London: British police have interviewed a Guardian journalist over the alleged leak of information from the investigation into phone hacking at the News of the World tabloid, the newspaper said on Wednesday.

The Guardian identified the reporter as Amelia Hill, one of several journalists at the paper who have been pursuing the phone hacking story.

Although neither London police nor the paper made the reason for Hill's interrogation clear, one of the detectives investigating the phone hacking case has recently been arrested on suspicion of "unauthorised disclosure of information."

The officer has not been identified. The Guardian didn't say whether the previous arrest was connected to Hill's questioning or comment on how she was alleged to have received her information.

But it did warn that other reporters should take note of the case, arguing that "journalists would no doubt be concerned if the police sought to criminalise conversations between off-record sources and reporters."

Relations between the media and Britain's largest police force, known colloquially as Scotland Yard, have become increasingly tense following revelations that the police did little to investigate the activities of the now-defunct News of the World, whose reporters spent years systematically intercepting voicemails of high-profile people in a wide-ranging campaign of illegal espionage.

The Guardian has played an instrumental role in exposing both the scandal and embarrassing Scotland Yard, which stands accused of overlooking the allegations for fear of antagonising Murdoch's powerful media empire. Allegations that reporters routinely bribed police have also dented the force's reputation.

Two top police officers have already lost their jobs over the scandal and those leading the revived police investigation into phone hacking have promised to be more thorough in their work.

Bureau Report

First Published: Wednesday, September 07, 2011, 23:58

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