Former News of the World royal editor Clive Goodman hacked Kate Middleton’s phone 155 times, a court has heard.
For the first time, Goodman effectively admitted in court at the Old Bailey yesterday that he had hacked into voicemail messages for the then Ms Middleton, Prince William and Prince Harry.
Goodman, who returned to the witness box after weeks of ill health, was accused of being more heavily involved in phone hacking with private detective Glenn Mulcaire in 2005 and 2006 than was previously stated.
In 2006, Goodman and Mulcaire pleaded guilty to hacking phones in relation to royal aides but, jurors were told, their activities went much further.
The then Ms Middleton’s phone was hacked 155 times, Prince William’s 35 times and Prince Harry’s nine times, the Old Bailey trial heard. Kate was even hacked on Christmas Day 2005, jurors were told.
The details emerged as Goodman was being cross-examined by former NotW editor Andy Coulson’s lawyer Timothy Langdale QC.
He asked: “I’m going to suggest you had direct contact with Glenn Mulcaire significantly before the time you have told us – that you yourself had been hacking on a much wider scale than you have told this court about.”
Goodman said he had not been asked a direct question.
When he was questioned about the three hacked royal aides, the witness said: “I’m not on trial for hacking. I completely agree I hacked these people’s phones. I am happy to give a full account of every single one of these.”
Mr Langdale went on: “Are you telling us you have forgotten that you hacked Kate Middleton 155 times, Prince William 35 times, Prince Harry nine times and all the others. Had you forgotten that?”
He replied: “No, I did not recall the specifics. The CPS [Crown Prosecution Service] have made it clear there are no other hacking charges. I have not forgotten.”
Mr Langdale said it was “simply not true” and he could not have forgotten hacking Kate Middleton 155 times.
He replied, “Yes, I’m sure I did,” adding: “There has been no intention to deceive you or anybody else in relation to phone hacking.”
Referring to Goodman’s 2006 arrest, Mr Langdale said: “It’s the one thing you must have been more worried about than anything else – that it would become clear you yourself had been hacking members of the royal family.”
Goodman replied: “I was terrified of the whole thing. I was mortified.”
Mr Langdale said Kate Middleton, who was to become the Duchess of Cambridge, was first hacked on 21 October 2005, shortly after she graduated from St Andrews University.
He asked Goodman why she had been targeted and if he had tasked Mulcaire to do it.
He replied: “She was a figure of increasing importance around the royal family.”
Mr Langdale said: “You are telling us Glenn Mulcaire hacked her without any instruction from you? Did you task him to do that?”
He replied: “I do not remember tasking him to do that. It’s possible but I do not recall.
“I have been as open and honest about hacking as I can be but nobody has asked me any questions about this before.”
Goodman, of Addlestone, Surrey, denies two counts of conspiring with Coulson and others to commit misconduct in public office.
Coulson is also on trial for conspiring to hack phones with former NotW editor Rebekah Brooks, managing editor Stuart Kuttner and others. The trial continues.