Murdoch backs Rebekah Brooks in tabloid scandal
News International chairman James Murdoch said Thursday he was satisfied with the "standard of ethics" of chief executive Rebekah Brooks, ex-editor of the doomed News of the World tabloid.
Murdoch added that he was confident Brooks did not know about the phone hackings of a teenage murder victim, families of dead soldiers and others when she ran the tabloid, which is due to close on Sunday.
"I am satisfied that Rebekah, her leadership of this business and her standard of ethics and her standard of conduct throughout her career, are very good," Murdoch, the son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, said in a television interview.
Asked whether he believed she had no knowledge of the hacking of mobile phone voice messages by reporters and private investigators, he replied: "I am satisfied that she neither had knowledge nor directed those activities."
Murdoch added that News International, the British newspaper arm of his father's News Corp business, was "transparently and proactively working with the police" over the allegations.
Brooks was editor of the News of the World at the time some of the phone hacking took place.
She has faced calls to quit from lawmakers including British opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband, who has also questioned her friendship with Prime Minister David Cameron.
News International announced on Thursday that the News of the World, Britain's second biggest selling newspaper, would print the last edition in its 168-year history on Sunday following the scandal over phone hacking.
The move comes as News Corp. awaits a British government decision -- which had been expected in coming days but may now be delayed until September -- on Rupert Murdoch's bid for control of pay-TV giant BSkyB.
© 2011 AFP