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More murky doings in Murdochland
The fall-out from the Murdochgate scandal has continued following the arrests of ten top editors and journalists who currently work for or have worked for the Sun newspaper.
These arrests are part of the police investigation "Elveden" into suspected bribery and corruption of police officers. It will come as no surprise to anyone aware of the methods of News International that journalists routinely paid police officers for information. Bribing a public official is a criminal offence, but that never stopped the Sun or the News of the World in the past.
Trevor Kavanagh, the associate editor of the Sun has claimed there is a witch-hunt against the paper and News International. He blames elements of News Corp, who owns News International, for handing over a portion of the 300 million internal company emails to the police that led to the arrests.
There is growing evidence that some within News Corp, who are involved in a power battle with Rupert Murdoch, are looking to get rid of large parts, if not all of the toxic News International.
Kavanagh complained that Sun employees had been subject to dawn raids by up to 20 police officers who went through children's clothes drawers looking for evidence. No doubt the Met police, who lost a police commissioner and deputy commissioner already due to the scandal, are trying to prove their independence from the Murdoch Empire.
However, Kavanagh was not so forthcoming in his criticisms of police methods when socialist Tommy Sheridan was the subject of a widely condemned police and state vendetta. This included having his home raided and young child traumatised. He was arrested outside his place of work and faced years of persecution, not least by the Scottish Sun and the now defunct News of the World, who he defeated in a defamation case in 2006.
The Socialist continues to call for a genuine democratic public inquiry, involving representatives of the trade union and labour movement, into the actions of the Murdoch empire. This must include the handing over of all documents, emails and other information to allow a full expose of the relationship between News International, the police and the political establishment.