Tuesday, September 20, 2011

#hacking :Met failed to consult before invoking Official Secrets Act

DPP and attorney general not contacted prior to Scotland Yard attempt to force the Guardian to reveal journalistic sources
Scotland Yard
Scotland Yard only approached the DPP for advice after trying to force the Guardian to reveal sources using the Official Secrets Act. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA
Scotland Yard officers failed to consult either the director of public prosecutions or the attorney general before invoking the Official Secrets Act to try to force the Guardian to reveal journalistic sources, it has been revealed.

Keir Starmer, the DPP, said he was approached for advice by the Metropolitan police professional standards squad only this afternoon, following leading articles in all Britain's major newspapers condemning police behaviour in pursuing the Guardian's sources for their revelations about the phone-hacking scandal. Prosecutions under the section of the Official Secrets Act concerned, Section 9 (2) of the 1989 legislation, can go ahead only with the specific consent of Starmer, who is an independent professional lawyer. Other sections of the act, concerned with espionage, require the consent of the attorney general, Dominic Grieve.
Grieve's office said he had not been consulted in advance.,, read more