REPORTING FROM LONDON — British lawmakers have set a date for James Murdoch, son of media tycoon Rupert Murdoch, to again be grilled about how much he knew about alleged phone-hacking practices at the now-defunct British tabloid News of the World and what practices he allowed, a parliamentary committee announced Monday.
The junior Murdoch, who is chairman of News International, a British unit of News Corp. that owned the tabloid, will be questioned by the committee Nov. 10. He will be called to address allegations by a former editor and former legal advisor of the paper that he was more aware of the wide use of phone-hacking by the publication’s reporters than he has previously acknowledged, and allegedly authorized the payoff of at least one celebrity victim of the practice. James Murdoch last faced the inquiry panel in July, along with his 80-year-old father.
Meanwhile, in his first appearance before the panel since the tabloid’s forced closure, News International executive Les Hinton on Monday offered little new insight into alleged phone-hacking under his stewardship of the company. What stood out in Hinton's appearance was a string of "I don’t remember" responses.
Public outrage triggered the News of the World's closure in July after revelations that the paper's reporters had hacked into messages on the mobile phone of murdered teenager Milly Dowler, raising hopes that the missing student might still be alive. Police chiefs and News International executives and staff have resigned in the wake of the scandal.
— Janet Stobart
Photo: James Murdoch and Rupert Murdoch appearing before a parliamentary committee July 19. Credit: Parbul TV / Reuters