Latest News Corp. Rumors: Papers Spied on Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles, Prime Minister

The phone hacking scandal that News Corporation is currently drowning in keeps getting worse. The latest round of rumors ups the ante quite a bit: The New York Times reports that two of the company’s newspapers allegedly bribed police officers to gain information about Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles and former Prime Minister Gordon Brown. And that’s not all. The hacking scandal might now extend to two more News Corp. papers – The Sunday Times and The Sun.

Because the rumors won’t stop, investors are starting to abandon ship. According to Bloomberg, the company lost $4 billion in market value in just four days, as headlines about the controversy continue to dominate the news cycle.

And now, with the Royal Family involved, News Corp.’s takeover of BSkyB is probably doomed.

The company announced yesterday that it was ready to submit its offer to the Competition Committee, effectively delaying any decision for up to eight months, but it seems hard to imagine the deal going through no matter how long it takes.

If you haven’t noticed, Britain tends to take the Royal Family pretty damn seriously. Mess with them, and you’re in a world of trouble.