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November 10, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Appearing before a parliamentary committee today (Thursday), James Murdoch maintained that he had not misled it during a previous appearance in July and appeared to accuse two former subordinates of doing the misleading. Appearing unperturbed by a succession of jibes directed at him by committee members, Murdoch, currently News Corp’s deputy COO, repeated what he had said back then — that no one had told him what others at the company’s British news unit, News International, already knew — that there was growing evidence that phone hacking was being conducted on “an industrial level” by the now defunct News of the World tabloid. Asked about testimony by Tom Crone, the former attorney for News International, and Colin Myler, the former editor of News of the World that they informed him of evidence of the illegal voicemail interceptions, Murdoch replied, “I believe their testimony was misleading, and I dispute it.” Murdoch’s unflappable demeanor appeared to frustrate MP Tom Watson, who has led the phone-hacking battle against News International in Parliament. At one point he accused News Corp executives of following the Mafia code of omerta, remaining loyally silent. “You must be the first Mafia boss in history who did not know he was running a criminal enterprise,” Watson told Murdoch, who brushed aside the remark. “Mr. Watson, please,” he said. “I think that’s inappropriate.”