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Police to investigate alleged payments to officers by NOTW

British police say they will investigate whether officers received payment from the newspaper in exchange for information.

News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks.
News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks.
Image: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire/Press Association Images

BRITISH POLICE SAY they will investigate allegations that officers received payments from The News of the World, which have emerged as part of the burgeoning phone hacking scandal.

London police say they received documents by the tabloid’s parent company, News International, which indicated that payments were made by News International to police officers in exchange for information, during the time that the paper was under the editorship of Andy Coulson, the BBC reports.

The revelation came as lawmakers prepared to stage an emergency House of Commons debate to vent their outrage over a widening phone hacking scandal that allegedly targeted a missing schoolgirl and the families of London terror victims in addition to celebrities and royals.

News International, the British linchpin of Rupert Murdoch’s global media empire, was under intense pressure following reports that the News of the World had hacked into the cell phone of missing 13-year-old Milly Dowler in 2002, deleting messages and giving her parents and police false hope that the girl was still alive.

Milly had been abducted and murdered on her way home from school in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey by serial killer Levi Bellfield. The search for her had transfixed Britain at the time.

Prime Minister David Cameron has described the allegations as a shocking intrusion, and major advertisers — including Ford UK — have pulled their ads from the paper.

Members of Parliament seized on the case to demand a full debate as pressure rose for the chief executive of News International, Rebekah Brooks, to resign, as she was editor of News of the World at the time when some of the alleged hacking took place.

Additional reporting by the AP

Read more: Companies begin to pull ads from NOTW >

Read more: Families of 7/7 victims ‘had their phones hacked’ >

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