Murdoch's empire: purging the officers
The politicians resent Rupert Murdoch's power via News Corp's many tentacles and they are putting the boot in now one of his papers has been exposed as having phone hacked on a near industrial scale. In a desperate and perhaps cynical ploy to maintain overall corporate respectability and to quarantine losses and stem credibility evaporation Murdoch has closed the 'News of the World' title - and sacked all the staff. His son is in charge of British operations and made the cuts, but they have protected the editor behind the scandal who must have, surely, authorised aspects of the hacking. Rupert made a public display of backing her. Now - a week after it broke and after numerous sacrifices of the innocents on the newsfloor - she may be about to have the book thrown at her.
The British media are going into hyper-drive with this news - a real feeding frenzy with this fresh meat on the plate. They hate Murdoch almost as much as the politicians fear and resent him.The Guardian: "At approximately 12.00 a 43-year-old woman was arrested by appointment at a London police station by officers from Operation Weeting [phone hacking investigation] together with officers from Operation Elveden [bribing of police officers investigation]. She is currently in custody.
"She was arrested on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications, contrary to Section1(1) Criminal Law Act 1977 and on suspicion of corruption allegations contrary to Section 1 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1906.
"The Operation Weeting team is conducting the new investigation into phone hacking.
"Operation Elveden is the investigation into allegations of inappropriate payments to police. This investigation is being supervised by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
"It would be inappropriate to discuss any further details regarding these cases at this time."
Bribing some coppers for phone numbers - and some tip offs or whatever. Doesn't sound like 'The end of the world' but with the spin of all Murdoch's corporate and political rivals against him it seems to be. His shares have tanked in this crisis and the volumes have been high, so people are bailing.But Murdoch wants to live forever and he won't go down easy, or at all. I can't imagine he could ever break up what he has amassed over his decades at the helm. I think it will stay together and he'll resist the political pressure to get him out of his dominant positions in the many markets he is in (incl. Sky here) but this is one hell of a bad day at the office and a hell of a week to look forward to.