Skip to main content

Sun executive editor faces charge over alleged corrupt payments

By Laura Smith-Spark, CNN
April 18, 2013 -- Updated 1606 GMT (0006 HKT)
(FILE) Rupert Murdoch holds a copy of 'The Sun on Sunday' newspaper on February 26, 2012.
(FILE) Rupert Murdoch holds a copy of 'The Sun on Sunday' newspaper on February 26, 2012.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Editor at The Sun is accused of conspiracy to commit misconduct in a public office
  • Fergus Shanahan allegedly authorized two corrupt payments by a Sun journalist
  • Shanahan is due to appear before Westminster Magistrates' Court on May 8
  • News International, which owns The Sun, declined to comment on the charge

London (CNN) -- An executive editor at The Sun newspaper, Britain's best-selling tabloid, is to be charged over alleged illegal payments to a public official, UK prosecutors said Thursday.

Fergus Shanahan is accused of conspiring with a public official and a journalist to commit misconduct in a public office while serving as an editor at The Sun, the Crown Prosecution Service said.

"It is alleged that in August 2006 and August 2007 Mr. Shanahan, in his role as an editor, (authorized) one of his journalists to make two payments totaling £7,000 ($10,700) to a public official for the disclosure of information," a CPS statement said.

Shanahan is due to appear before Westminster Magistrates' Court on May 8.

The Sun is owned by News International, the UK subsidiary of media baron Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.

News International declined to comment on the charge against Shanahan.

He is currently an executive editor, but it's not clear whether he was in the same role at the time of the alleged offense.

The charge results from an investigation set up by London's Metropolitan Police into alleged corrupt payments by journalists to public officials.

Known as Operation Elveden, the inquiry is running in parallel with an investigation into claims that UK journalists hacked people's voice mails to get stories.

They were set up in the wake of the phone hacking scandal that led to the closure of News International's Sunday tabloid, the News of the World, in 2011.

Dozens of arrests have been made in connection with the two investigations.

CNN's Stephanie Halasz contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
December 24, 2014 -- Updated 0254 GMT (1054 HKT)
A decade on from devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the Red Cross' Matthias Schmale says that the lessons learned have made us safer.
December 24, 2014 -- Updated 0024 GMT (0824 HKT)
As soon as word broke that "The Interview" will hit some theaters, celebrations erupted across social media -- including from the stars of the film.
December 23, 2014 -- Updated 1844 GMT (0244 HKT)
Did a rogue hacker -- or the U.S. government -- cut the cord for the regime's Internet?
December 24, 2014 -- Updated 0106 GMT (0906 HKT)
Monaco's newborn royals, Princess Gabriella and Crown Prince Jacques Honore Rainier, posed for their first official photos with their parents.
December 23, 2014 -- Updated 1706 GMT (0106 HKT)
Tim Berners-Lee, the man credited with inventing the world wide web, gives a speech on April 18, 2012 in Lyon, central France, during the World Wide Web 2012 international conference on April 18, 2012 in Lyon.
What's next for the Internet? Acclaimed scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee shares his insights.
December 23, 2014 -- Updated 0822 GMT (1622 HKT)
The United States and North Korea have long been locked in a bitter cycle of escalating and deescalating tensions. But the current cyber conflict may be especially hard to predict.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 2100 GMT (0500 HKT)
A chilling video shows Boko Haram executing dozens of non-Muslims.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 1134 GMT (1934 HKT)
New planes, new flight tests ... but will we get cheaper airfares?
December 21, 2014 -- Updated 1746 GMT (0146 HKT)
The killing of two cops could not have happened at a worse time for a city embroiled in a public battle over police-community relations, Errol Louis says.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 0251 GMT (1051 HKT)
The gateway to Japan's capital, Tokyo Station, is celebrating its centennial this month -- and it has never looked better.
December 20, 2014 -- Updated 1621 GMT (0021 HKT)
Unicef has warned that more than 1.7 million children in conflict-torn areas of eastern Ukraine face an "extremely serious" situation.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 1701 GMT (0101 HKT)
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT