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Parliament not done with News Corp.'s James Murdoch

July 29, 2011 |  9:03 am

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News Corp. Deputy Chief Operating Officer James Murdoch has been called to give more information on the extent of his knowledge of phone hacking by journalists at the company's now-shuttered London tabloid News of the World and its other British papers.

In a closed meeting Friday, Britain’s parliamentary committee on Culture, Media and Sports decided to call Murdoch -- who is also over News International, the unit that houses the company's British newspapers -- and other former News International employees. Murdoch will provide written replies to questions, but has not been asked to again appear before Parliament.

At issue are remarks from former News International lawyer Tom Crone and a former News of the World editor Colin Myler as well as Jon Chapman, ex-legal affairs director. All three have offered up information that contradicts what Murdoch told Parliament earlier this month in regard to the extent of his knowledge about phone hacking being done by News of the World. The tabloid has been found to have hacked into voice mail accounts of not only public figures, but also victims of crime and terrorism. The extent of the hacking has outraged much of Britain and given News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch and his family a black eye.

The news that Parliament wants more answers from Murdoch comes just a day after the board of British Sky Broadcasting (BSkyB) held a meeting and did not make a move to push James Murdoch out as its chairman. News Corp owns 39% of BSkyB but had its plans to buy the rest derailed by the News of the World debacle.

In a new development Friday, Peta Buscombe, chairwoman of independent media watchdog Press Complaints Commission, announced her resignation after fierce criticism on her handling of the  complaints about tabloid phone hacking over recent years.  The PCC failed to act against the News of the World in 2009 when complaints emerged of phone hacking by reporters on the paper.

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-- Janet Stobart, reporting from London

Photo: James Murdoch arrives for work in east London. Warren Allott / AFP / Getty Images

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