Friday, September 23, 2011

#Hackgate : Dying Jade Goody was her phone hacked ? ..Met asked to investigate ! Dear God...

It is understood Mishcon de Reya lawyer asked to to go to the Met with allegations made by Goody's mother

Jade Goody's wedding
Jade Goody: lived her last seven months in a media glare. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA
The Metropolitan police are to be asked to investigate allegations that reality TV star Jade Goody's phone was hacked while she was dying with cancer.

It is understood Charlotte Harris, the Mishcon de Reya lawyer representing several phone-hacking claimants, has been asked to represent her and to go to the Met with the allegations made by Goody's mother, Jackiey Budden.

Budden believes both her and her daughter's phones were hacked, but did nothing about it until July this year when she read about murder victim Milly Dowler's phone messages being intercepted by the News of the World. She could not understand how journalists were getting hold of information and, when she read the Dowler story, believed it could have been through phone-hacking.

"She [Jackiey] will be going to the police. She believes her phone was hacked by the News of the World, and Jade's. Jade told me 'I'm convinced my phone is being hacked'," said Max Clifford, who handled Goody's PR after she was diagnosed with cervical cancer in August 2008.

"Jade had said to me on many occasions that someone had been bugging her phone because of stuff that was coming out in the papers. She would say, 'I've had these conversations and there's no way any of these people would have revealed them'," added Clifford. "This was all while she was ill. I think it's absolutely disgusting."

Clifford said Goody was convinced calls she made to her mother in August 2008 from the Big Brother set in India to tell her she had cancer had been hacked. "She said to me 'I think my phone is being bugged'," he added.

The PR man, who settled his own News of the World phone-hacking action for more than £1m last year, said the former Big Brother contestant was an obvious target – in the months between being diagnosed and her death in March 2009, there was "a feeding frenzy" and "immense interest" in getting exclusives about her personal life.

If the allegations against the News of the World are substantiated, it would increase the duration of the now defunct News International title's allegedly illegal activities. Up to now the News of the World has been implicated in phone-hacking allegations up to mid 2006 when Glenn Mulcaire, the phone investigator who formally worked for the title, was arrested.

Mishcon de Reya said it "could not confirm" whether or not it had been instructed by Budden.

News International declined to comment, but a spokeswoman said the company continued to cooperate fully with police investigation.

Goody lived the last seven years of her life in the spotlight, with every twist and turn documented or exposed in the tabloids from her first appearance in Channel 4's Big Brother in 2002, when she was branded "Miss Piggy" by the tabloids, to the day she died.

Her on-off relationship with the father of her two children, a miscarriage, and then her cancer were all covered in minute detail by the tabloids, with 140 stories alone featuring Goody in the News of the World between diagnosis and her death seven months later.

But she also regularly co-operated with the now defunct News International paper in "buy-ups" – deals in which she would talk about her life in exchange for payment.

In a separate development on Friday, the actress Sienna Miller revealed that she accused her mother, her sister and her former boyfriend Jude Law of selling stories about her to the press because she could not understand how journalists were getting information about her private life.

"I changed my mobile number three times in three months. There were clicks on the line. I would pick up the phone and it would drop, there were messages I would never get, coupled with articles [containing private information] coming out every week.

"So I started to do tests. I would leave messages on people's phones, like we're going to rent this house or whatever, and it would appear next day in the papers," she told the Independent.