James Murdoch Says Former News Corp. Executives Misled Parliament

Denies he saw incriminating email

James Murdoch has contradicted the testimony of two former News of the World executives who previously countered Murdoch’s own testimony that he did not know about the pervasiveness of phone hacking at the now-defunct newspaper.

On Thursday, Murdoch once again testified before Parliament, taking a strong position against the September testimony of Tom Crone, former legal manager of News of the World, and Colin Myler, a former editor at the newspaper. On Sept. 6, Crone and Myler told Parliament that they were "certain" they told Murdoch about a 2005 email that indicated phone hacking was not limited to only one reporter and was more widespread at the tabloid.

Murdoch stood by his former testimony and called Crone and Myler’s testimony into question, telling Parliament, “I believe their testimony was misleading and I dispute it.” When members of Parliament pressed Murdoch, asking him who was telling the truth—him or Crone and Myler—he was adamant that the pair never showed him the email in question and said, “It's for this committee to decide the quality of the evidence.”

Parliament’s questions moved to the Sun, another U.K. newspaper owned and operated by News Corp. When asked if the company would shutter the Sun if it is revealed journalists at the paper were engaged in phone hacking, Murdoch told the Parliamentary committee he did not think any corporate reaction could be ruled out based on wrongdoing. Earlier this month, a journalist from the Sun was arrested for allegedly making illegal payments to law enforcement.