By Simon Basketter
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Tony Blair ‘advised’ Rebekah Brooks before arrest

This article is over 7 years, 10 months old
Issue 2392

Tony Blair offered to act as an “unofficial adviser” to Rebekah Brooks at the height of the phone hacking scandal, the Old Bailey heard last week.

The former prime minister had an hour-long conversation with Brooks in July 2011. 

The former News of the World editor emailed the contents to her boss, James Murdoch.

According to Brooks, Blair advised “no rash short-term solutions as they only give you long-term headaches”.

Instead Brooks said he suggested an independent inquiry which would report back and clear their names in due course. 

In the note sent to James Murdoch by Brooks, Blair suggested the inquiry “publish a Hutton-style report” that would “clear you and accept short comings [sic]” 

Blair also allegedly advocated sleeping pills for “clear heads” and told Brooks, “It will pass. Tough up.”

Members of the jury were shown an email Brooks sent to Murdoch on 1 July 2011.

She was arrested by police just days later.

Brooks also told the jury she had no idea a private detective had been hacking phones for the News of the World while she was editor.

Brooks denies all charges in the ongoing phone hacking trial.

 

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