Detective denies being 'friendly' with tabloid

A SENIOR policeman who led an inquiry into alleged illegal phone hacking in the News of the World rejected an accusation by Tommy Sheridan yesterday that police had treated the paper with "kid gloves."

Detective Chief Superintendent Philip Williams, 48, dismissed a suggestion that he had been on friendly terms with the tabloid, and insisted he had pushed the law as far as possible during the investigation.

Sheridan complained that although his name, address and phone number had been found in documents seized from a disgraced private investigator, no-one in the inquiry had bothered to let him know.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

DCS Williams said the details of many people in public life had been discovered, but it was not unusual for someone connected with the media, as the investigator Glenn Mulcaire had been, to possess such information.

"It is not evidence of interception … all we have is your name, address and phone number. There is nothing else that shows anything was done with that," said DCS Williams.

Sheridan has claimed at the High Court in Glasgow that he was targeted by the News of the World as part of a campaign to "destroy" him, and that he was the victim of illegal surveillance by phone hacking and bugging.

In 2007, Clive Goodman, a News of the World journalist, and Mulcaire were jailed for illegally intercepting voicemails.

DCS Williams said his inquiry found no evidence to link anyone else at the paper to the "dark arts" of illegal activity.

Sheridan claimed: "You treated the News of the World with kid gloves because you were on friendly terms with them."

DCS Williams stated: "That is not the case, sir."

The trial in Glasgow of Sheridan and his wife Gail on perjury charges continues.