Tuesday 3 April 2012

Leveson Module 3 Directions

Today at the Leveson Inquiry, after Lucy Panton gave evidence, the inquiry discussed the directions for Module 3 - The relationship between press and politicians.  Here's a summary of what was said:
  • Lord Leveson invited newspapers to submit their five best public interest stories.
  • Lord Leveson confirmed press reports on the inquiry will be made part of the record.
  • The full Milly Dowler story will be heard on the week commencing May 8th.
  • Victims must reapply for core participant status.
  • Newspapers will automatically receive core participant status unless they decide to drop out.
  • The Metropolitan Police Service will remain as core participants.
  • The Metropolitan Police Authority and the London Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime will not remain as core participants.
  • Lawyer to the victims David Sherborne QC said only a limited number of victims wished to remain core participants.
  • David Sherborne said politicians from Module 1 and 2 plus others wished to apply to be core participants, this includes Chris Bryant, Simon Hughes, Denis MacShane, John Prescott, Claire Ward, Tessa Jowell, Tom Watson and Evan Harris.
  • David Sherborne went on to add that Tom Watson was put under surveillance to influence what the Select Committee was doing from 2009 onwards.
  • David Sherborne said the second group of witnesses apply for core participant status in Module 3 were three individuals who were not politicians, and emphasised the unified voice of core participant victims.
  • Elaine Decoulos took the witnesses stand and claimed the Met had failed to investigate claims she had made about David Sherborne's clients in previous evidence, and that she felt she was being frozen out of the inquiry.
  • Michael Ward also appeared applying for core participant status.
  • Stephen Parkinson, acting for Rebekah Brooks, confirmed that Rebekah Brooks will give written and oral evidence in module 3, and applied for core participant status, saying it would enable Brooks to have advance notice of evidence given by other participants.
  • Lord Leveson added he would seek read-only statements from political commentators, and that lines of questioning would need to be received from counsel 7 days in advance, not the same morning as the questioning as it is now.
  • Lord Leveson said there would be little evidence in Module 4 - Recommendations for a more effective policy and regulation that supports the integrity and freedom of the press while encouraging the highest ethical standards.
  • A rough timetable of events for the following weeks was given:
  • Week commencing April 23rd - Propriators and media owners will give evidence (maybe the Murdoch's?)
  • Week commencing May 8th - The conclusion of the Milly Dowler story and a review of Operation Reproof and Operation Glade 
  • The formal part of the inquiry would end in July with Module 3 end in June. 
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