The News of the World admitted that its illegal phone tapping went further than they had previously claimed.
It has also emerged that Sir Gus O’Donnell, the cabinet secretary, vetoed an attempt by then prime minister Gordon Brown to hold a judicial inquiry into the scandal.
He was scared it would make the Murdoch-owned papers more hostile to Labour in the run-up to the election.
Police corruption lies at the heart of the issue. A raft of police officers took money to get evidence for the tabloids. Some were involved in large scale drug smuggling.
The police repeatedly attempted to limit the investigation.