Rebekah Brooks and Charlie Brooks

Rebekah and Charlie Brooks have both been charged by the CPS

Credit: PA Wire
Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks is one of six people to be charged with perverting the course of justice in relation to the investigations into hacking and alleged media payments to public officials, the Crown Prosecution Service has announced.

Brooks, her husband Charlie, personal assistant Cheryl Carter, chauffeur Paul Edwards, News International head of security Mark Hanna and security guard Daryl Jorsling are the first people to be charged so far in the ongoing inquiries by the Metropolitan police.

The first charge – in which all six are named – relates to alleged attempts "to conceal material from officers of the Metropolitan police" between 6-19 July last year.

A second charge, relating just to Rebekah Brooks and her PA Cheryl Carter, is that they "conspired together permanently to remove seven boxes of material from the archive of News International".

The Crown Prosecution Service said in a statement that there was "sufficient evidence for there to be a realistic prospect of conviction".

The director of public prosecutions' principal legal adviser, Alison Levett QC, said: "All these matters relate to the ongoing police investigation into allegations of phone hacking and corruption of public officials in relation to the News of the World and the Sun newspapers. Following charge, these individuals will appear before Westminster Magistrates' Court on a date to be determined."

She added: "May I remind all concerned that these six individuals now will be charged with criminal offences and that each has a right to a fair trial. It is very important that nothing is said, or reported, which could prejudice that trial. For these reasons it would be inappropriate for me to comment further."

Rebekah and Charlie Brooks said in a statement: "We have this morning been informed by the Office of the Department of Public Prosecutions that we are to be charged with perverting the course of justice. We deplore this weak and unjust decision.

"After the further unprecedented posturing of the CPS we will respond later today after our return from the police station."

Brooks was first arrested by police in July 2011 as part of Operation Weeting, investigating phone hacking, within days of quitting News International. She was arrested again in March in connection with the separate perverting the course of justice allegation.

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