Earlier this week Deputy Assistant Commissioner Sue Akers, of the Metropolitan Police, London, described Rupert Murdoch’s News International as being at the heart of a criminal network.
She described how there is evidence of significant amounts of cash (over £150,000 in one case alone) being paid out to public officials. Officials found across every major department of Government – Defence, Health, Home Office, Business, Police, Justice and , of course, the Cabinet Office.
Yesterday it was disclosed that John Yates, former Metropolitan Assistant Commissioner, was extensively wined and dined by senior people within Murdoch’s criminal enterprise. Details of which he failed to record in the hospitality register.
In 2009, as Assistant Commissioner for police, Mr Yates had to decide whether to re-open the hacking Inquiry. He found there was no need for another investigation and subsequently claimed that he did not look at any documents before making that decision.
Considering the massive amount of documentary evidence which we now know was available at the time, there was not much else he could say. Clearly Mr Yates is the ‘see no evil’ kind of monkey.
Of course, that would have been well known at the time. It was exactly the quality which would have led to him being appointed by Tony Blair to investigate the ‘Cash for Honours’ scandal in 2006/7. Needless to say, after a ‘thorough investigation’ nobody was prosecuted. Yates had shown his mettle.
Which brings us to the relationship between Blair and Murdoch. Amazingly, there are no public records available of the extensive meetings and conversations between these two powerful men.
Although a few dates of some phone calls were released when Blair left office in 2007 (showing three conversations in the week before the Iraq invasion) – no details were released. Subsequent Freedom of Information requests have simply been ignored by the Cabinet Office – the same Cabinet Office whose officials have been implicated by DAC Akers.
The revelations of the breadth of Murdoch’s criminal empire, coupled with the disclosure that Tony Blair is god-father to Murdoch’s daughter, makes it clear that Murdoch has been exerting a malevolent influence on British politics and policy for a long time.
The Blair-Murdoch conspiracy must be investigated.