LONDON – Media executive James Murdoch knew of a damaging piece of evidence three years ago that phone hacking was practiced by more than one reporter at the News of the World tabloid, despite his statements to the contrary, two of his former colleagues said Tuesday.
The assertion by Colin Myler, the paper’s last editor, and Tom Crone, its head in-house lawyer, boosted the likelihood that Murdoch will be called to appear again before Parliament to explain the discrepancy. Both he and his father, media magnate Rupert Murdoch, gave evidence to lawmakers in July after the phone-hacking scandal broke wide open and threw their massive News Corp. empire into turmoil.
Myler and Crone, who were summoned to reappear before Parliament on Tuesday, said they talked to James Murdoch briefly in 2008 about an email that seemed to implicate the News of the World’s chief reporter in the tapping of cellphones, an illegal tactic for which a colleague, Clive Goodman, had already been convicted and jailed.
On Tuesday, James Murdoch said he stood by his words before Parliament in July.