VickersLetter | Misconduct | Politics

Paul Vickers, Legal Director Trinity Mirror plc One Canada Square Canary Wharf London E14 5AP

BY FAX TO 020 7293 3405 24 August, 2011 Dear Mr Vickers, INTERNAL TRINITY MIRROR INVESTIGATION INTO HACKING & BLAGGING We understand from press reports that you are leading an internal review into Mirror Group Phone Hacking and Information Blagging. We have been given some information which might assist you in your inquiries and in an endeavour to be helpful we are passing this information on. We have been told that in 2007 a People journalist called David Brown was sacked for "gross misconduct". He had been hacking into the electronic story files of the Mirror to help him write his own stories and stealing them from the Trinity Mirror plc stable mate. We are also told Brown took Trinity Mirror plc to an industrial tribunal for unfair dismissal. In his submission he alleged that his actions were at the minor range of misconduct in the context of routine and systematic hacking of the Beckham family's domestic staff by Mirror Group journalists – which had the knowledge of its editors. Apparently Trinity Mirror's Human Resources manager was also cited as having 'stonewalled' on this issue when it was pointed out by Brown in his defence. We understand that on the advice of Trinity Mirror plc lawyers the unacceptable conduct charge was dropped and a settlement and "Compromise Agreement" was swiftly made before the tribunal was held and the accusations made public. During your review you might like to establish why Trinity Mirror mounted no further investigation into these allegations despite both the Information Commissioner and the Metropolitan Police calling on media owners to confess to any hacking. If this proves to be true it will all be very embarrassing for senior executives at Mirror Group plc since my understanding is the CEO, Sly Bailey, has direct reporting lines from all the editors and cannot credibly claim that she was unaware of the matter. You yourself may be in a position to cast light on this matter since we believe you were the Legal Director at the time and presumably would have overseen the legal advice. No doubt
F : 070 9201 2337 E : A campaign advocating political transparency and openness.

you will wish to get to the bottom of it all and avoid any suggestion that your investigation is a mere whitewash. We are aware that Trinity Mirror plc have continuously stated that they have not had hacking issues. At the very least it will look strange if the report you are compiling does not cover Brown’s allegations which appear to have been so comprehensively hushed up. Please be so kind as to acknowledge receipt by return. Yours sincerely,

Paul Staines Sunlight Centre

F : 070 9201 2337 E : A campaign advocating political transparency and openness.

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