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JAMES MURDOCH SAYS HACKERGATE DIDN’T FORCE HIM TO STEP DOWN

March 15, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

James Murdoch

James Murdoch has apologized but has accepted no blame for the telephone hacking scandal at the London newspapers overseen by News International, the News Corp unit that he headed at the time. “Clearly, with the benefit of hindsight, I acknowledge that wrongdoing should have been uncovered earlier,” Murdoch said in a seven-page letter to a parliamentary committee looking into the matter. “I could have asked more questions, requested more documents and taken a more challenging and skeptical view of what I was told, and I will do so in the future.” He denied that his recent resignation from News International as its chairman had anything to do with the scandal and reiterated that he had no knowledge that telephone hacking was widespread at News International when it paid a $1.2-million settlement to Gordon Taylor, head of the Professional Footballers’ Association. Responding to claims by a former attorney and an editor at the now-defunct News of the World that they warned him by email of the matter, Murdoch said that the email arrived “on a Saturday afternoon when I was likely alone with my two children” and that it was open to more than one interpretation. He maintained that he was preoccupied with the company’s television business at the time and that he had therefore “relied on the people who had assured me that thorough investigations had been carried out.” However, he insisted, “Whilst I accept my share of the responsibility for not uncovering wrongdoing sooner, I did not mislead parliament and the evidence does not support any other conclusion.”