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1043

July 20 - 26 2011 No. 1043

THE WEEKLY WORLD EDITION OF The Daily Telegraph AND The Sunday Telegraph telegraph.co.uk/expat

The Telegraph

GOLDENOLDIE Darren Clarke wins the Open at 42

:: SPORT PAGES 46-48

By Christopher Hope Whitehall Editor SIR PAUL STEPHENSON resigned as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police on Sunday, putting more pressure on David Cameron over his personal links to the phone hacking scandal.

A clearly angry Sir Paul said he was stepping down after criticism over his decision to employ as a personal adviser Neil Wallis, the former deputy editor of the News of the World who was arrested on suspicion of phone hacking.

In an emotional statement on Sunday evening he insisted he did not want to “compromise” the Prime Minister but pointedly said Mr Wallis had not been associated with phone hacking at the time Sir Paul employed him in October 2009.

He said that by contrast the full scale of phone hacking at the News of the World had begun to emerge when Andy Coulson, who went on to become David Cameron’s director of communications, resigned as editor.

Sir Paul said: “Let me turn to the reported displeasure of the Prime Minister and the Home Secretary of the relationship with Mr Wallis.

“At the time [I had] no reason for considering the

NEWS

SKY

contractual relationship to be a matter of concern. Unlike Mr Coulson, Mr Wallis had not resigned from the News of the World or, to the best of my knowledge, been in any way associated with the original phone hacking investigation.”

Sir Paul added that he had felt unable to mention his relationship with Mr Wallis to the Prime Minister, because Mr Wallis had used to work for Mr Coulson.

He said: “Once Mr Wallis’s name did become associated with Operation Weeting, I did not want to compromise the Prime Minister in any way by revealing or discussing a potential suspect who clearly had a close relationship with Mr Coulson.”

Sir Paul said that while he was resigning with his personal integrity intact, he was concerned his relationship with Mr Wallis was proving an unwelcome

INSIDE Questions over Coulson visit to Chequers p2 Gordon Brown attack on News International p4

‘News Corp ruled the world for many years. Nobody knows what wiped it out’

Sir Paul Stephenson, left, announces his resignation as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police in an emotional statement on Sunday night. Above: Rebekah Brooks was arrested by appointment earlier the same day, and released on bail after 12 hours of questioning

“distraction” to the “enormous challenge” of policing London in the run-up to the Olympics.

He said: “The heroism and bravery of Met officers … is in danger of being eclipsed by the ongoing debate about relationships between senior officers and the media. That can never be right. If I stayed I know the inquiry outcomes would reaffirm my personal integrity. Therefore, although I have received continued personal support from both the Home Secretary and the mayor, I have with great sadness informed both of my intention to resign.”

He said that he had no involvement in the original phone hacking investigation in 2006. “I had no reason to believe this was anything other than a successful investigation. I was unaware that there were any other documents in our possession of the nature that have now emerged.”

Sir Paul met Mr Wallis later that year and employed him as a PR adviser between October 2009 and September 2010. Sir Paul said he had kept his connection to Mr Wallis secret from Mr Cameron, Theresa May, the Home Secretary, and Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, to avoid exposing them to criticism.

He added that he had been unable to divulge the relationship earlier because it would have affected the integrity of the police’s current investigation into phone hacking. Mr Wallis was arrested last Thursday.

Mr Cameron, who was informed of Sir Paul’s resignation after taking off on a trade visit to Africa, said he understood and respected the decision. He added: “What matters most of all now is

Continued on page 2

By Martin Beckford, Mark Hughes and Christopher Hope REBEKAH BROOKS, the former editor of the News of the World, was arrested by Scotland Yard detectives on Sunday, raising further questions over James Murdoch’s knowledge of phone hacking and corruption at the tabloid. Mrs Brooks, who resigned as chief executive of News International last Friday, was arrested and questioned after agreeing to attend a police station at noon.

She was arrested in relation to the investigations into telephone hacking and alleged illegal payments to police officers.

She was bailed at midnight on Sunday — about 12 hours after her arrest — and will return to a London police station in late October.

The 43 year-old, the 10th person arrested since the Metropolitan Police reopened its phone hacking inquiry in January, is the most high-profile News International figure to have been arrested so far.

Sources close to Mrs Brooks said she was contacted by the police only last Friday and was not aware she was to be arrested until she met officers on Sunday. Her arrest throws into doubt her highly anticipated appearance before the Commons culture, media and sport select committee, scheduled for Tuesday. Commentators said she may be able to decline to

Continued on page 2