AM take down! Detective arrested for leaking info to the Guardian

It has felt like ploughing a lonely furrow, using this blog and Twitter to try to make people sit up and question how the Guardian was getting information about the Met Police’s investigation into ‘phone hacking’ and getting unreleased details of arrests.

But it looks like this humble little blog has helped to make the right people take notice…

Sky News is reporting that a 51-year-old detective at the Metropolitan Police has been arrested at his desk and suspended on suspicion of leaking information from the phone hacking investigation team to journalists at the Guardian.


Innocent unless proven guilty of course, but this could finally underline the Guardian’s insipid willingness to take advantage of illegal actions to get a story.  Let’s see if this is Amelia Hill, Nick Davies and David Leigh’s Met Police ‘Deep Throat’ and if they are now quite so ‘johnny on the spot’ with their phone hacking stories.

Hopefully the investigation into this Detective’s conduct will also look into any links with how David Leigh managed to trace ‘Jeff Id’ from the Air Vent blog, as covered by Steve McIntyre at Climate Audit.

Update: The BBC is reporting the story – after a fashion – without mentioning the Guardian once. Unbelievable bias and a disgraceful attempt to withhold information from their audience. It should be unbelivable, but with the relationship between the Guardian and the BBC sadly it is not. The BBC, half the story – if you’re lucky – all the time, especially when their friends are part of the story.

As for the Guardian, there is nothing about this story on their ‘breaking news’ ticker or anywhere on their home page.  I wonder why… We must find out if money passed hands here. If it did then we must be told how high up in the Guardian’s editorial hierarchy this was sanctioned.

Further Update: Despite the story of the Met Police detective being arrested for allegedly leaking information to the Guardian being all over Sky News and various news media outlets and blogs, the BBC’s update of their story, 34 mins after the last version was published, doggedly continues to omit the name ‘Guardian’.

In fact, they are even trying to focus attention on the arrest of another News of the World journalist and unashamedly are even using the NotW logo as their story image, which could give the impression the police leaks were to the NotW and not the Guardian!  Utterly incredible.

Further Update: The third BBC version of the story in an hour, and finally the Guardian gets a mention! But no, not as the recipient of police leaks from the Opertation Weeting team, only named as the paper that broke the story that John Desborough of the NotW had been arrested.

The BBC’s determination not to tell its audience that the Guardian has been getting confidential information from a police source at the Met makes the corporation look ridiculous. Strange how the BBC was happy to name the NotW as the recipient of information from a police source on the Milly Dowler investigation though... Hypocrisy? Double standards? You decide.

And another update: Quick, quick, make it seem that this was just an innocuous bit of information sharing! Enter the narrative of ‘Off-the-record sources’.

Yes, at 17:50 (missed the screenshot, so off to Newssniffer we go) the BBC made another change to its story and, finally and reluctantly, wrote the name ‘Guardian’ in connection with the detective arrest story.  But even in this, like Soviet era Pravda, the BBC maintained its disinformation effort.  It deliberately tried to make it seem as if the Guardian is just a concerned newspaper with no direct interest in the matter and is passing comment:

The Guardian has issued a statement reacting to the arrest of the police officer.

It said: “On the broader point raised by the arrest, journalists would no doubt be concerned if conversations between off-the-record sources and reporters came routinely to be regarded as criminal activity.

“In common with all news organisations we have no comment to make on the sources of our journalism.”

Amazing.  Seems like the cat has got Rusbridger’s tongue.  But even this didn’t go far enough for the BBC in its effort to ‘run interference’ for the Graun.  So the story has been changed again!  This time a wholly unjustified and laughable caveat has been applied:

If your sides aren’t aching by now at the hilarity of watching the BBC’s contortions in its effort to cover the Guardian’s backside, you’ve got no sense of humour.  The BBC doesn’t even use the whole of the Guardian’s statement, which reads:

How very coy.  Such reticence from an entity that is usually so bold…

26 Responses to “AM take down! Detective arrested for leaking info to the Guardian”


  1. 1 Stuck-Record 19/08/2011 at 4:48 pm

    I don’t know why I’m surprised, but as of this precise moment (Friday 16:47) the BBC news story, on their website, reporting this makes absolutely no mention of the Guardian newspaper.

    It’s all getting rather pathetic isn’t it?

  2. 2 Span Ows 19/08/2011 at 4:50 pm

    Not sure about this; I think I’ll have to wait and see what the trusted BBC has to say :-)

  3. 3 Stuck-Record 19/08/2011 at 4:51 pm

    I forgot to add: WELL DONE!

  4. 4 Stuck-Record 19/08/2011 at 5:16 pm

    The principle has been established (by the Guardian) that it isn’t credible for Editorial directors not to know when this stuff is going on in their newsrooms. ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ has been nixed as well. So, the Guardian will presumably be calling for Rusbridger’s resignation?

    I’ve got to stop now as there is a pig flying outside my window.

  5. 5 David Jones 19/08/2011 at 5:51 pm

    Well done AM. Aren’t you glad you didn’t give up? I am!

  6. 6 Span Ows 19/08/2011 at 5:52 pm

    This is great: here’s the BBC story I mentioned earlier: mentions the NOTW 3 times and News International but doesn’t mention the Guardian! LOL! Unfuckingbelievable.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-14596815

  7. 7 IanPJ 19/08/2011 at 5:58 pm

    A very well deserved pat on the back for you AM. Just goes to show that sometimes the little voices can make a difference.

  8. 8 Span Ows 19/08/2011 at 6:01 pm

    Not sure if I can post an image here but here’s a link to the screenshot just in case they do a stealth edit later…

  9. 9 Autonomous Mind 19/08/2011 at 6:03 pm

    Span Ows, thanks for that. This post has been updated with screen grabs of the BBC’s changing story – and showing their refusal to name the Guardian. I have been using WebCite to manually get snapshots of the story as it changes.

    http://www.webcitation.org/archive – Just put in the BBC story page URL and your email address and save the resulting URL that snapshots the page.

  10. 10 Span Ows 19/08/2011 at 6:19 pm

    That’s a handy tool! I do it manually and then use Publisher but it’s all a bit long-winded.

  11. 11 ReefKnot 19/08/2011 at 6:37 pm

    Well done AM.
    Persistence pays off . I’m a firm believer in ‘ If you keep on chipping away, sooner or later a piece will fall off ‘.

  12. 12 Uncle Badger 19/08/2011 at 7:15 pm

    Congratulations, AM – and also on the link from Delingpole – high time you got proper recognition for all your efforts.

    As for the BBC, is anyone really surprised? Their shamelessness is contemptible – a wholly predictable.

  13. 13 G. P Brown 19/08/2011 at 7:40 pm

    Not quite sure what Fred Flinstone’s favourite saying looks like in writing so will just say that is what I am thinking.

    BBC News and Current Affairs – the broadcasting arm of The Guardian you have to pay for to (legally) watch television.

  14. 14 John Coles 19/08/2011 at 7:46 pm

    Well done, AM.

  15. 15 mfosdb 19/08/2011 at 9:14 pm

    Who runs Britain?

  16. 16 Andy 19/08/2011 at 10:17 pm

    Bravo….AM

    got a nifty little tool to share that coverts any doc word, excel web pages whatever into pdf format so you can save it to hard drive and retrieve any time

    its free and is free from add ons….

    http://www.cutepdf.com/products/cutepdf/writer.asp

    click the free download link then install (watch out for the google add on)

    when isntalled it sets up an extra function called cute pdf on your print menu,

    if you have a web page you want to save just click on yur print icon select the cute pdf tab and then name it date it etc and save to wherever you want to on your hard drive..

    voila

  17. 17 Autonomous Mind 19/08/2011 at 10:38 pm

    Thanks Andy.

    Thanks also to everyone for your generous comments.

    There is much more yet about the Guardian and our special friend, David Leigh, that when brought to the fore that will make this stuff look like a side issue.

  18. 18 orkneylad 19/08/2011 at 11:37 pm

    Well done AM . . . . . . .raising my glass sir!

  19. 19 Pointman 20/08/2011 at 1:13 am

    Well done AM.

    Pointman

  20. 20 Lynne 20/08/2011 at 7:13 am

    Wow, AM. Respect!

  21. 21 meltemian 20/08/2011 at 9:51 am

    Fantastic work, just keep chipping away and eventually it falls.

  22. 22 Shevva 20/08/2011 at 9:55 am

    Do you want me to click on an ad or two? or is visiting enough.

    And well done on all the hard work, your a bright light in a darkening world.

  23. 23 Nick 20/08/2011 at 10:31 am

    Truly, well done, AM! One-up to you.

    As I write, the BBC online news page says the newspaper involved is “unnamed”, and goes on: “It is not possible to confirm the newspaper’s identity however the Guardian has issued a statement.” which, paraphrasing, says journalists would be concerned if off the record briefings were regarded as criminal.

    It’s fun to watch the squirming wordplay.

    Thanks again – hats off to AM!

  24. 24 Daniel1979 20/08/2011 at 1:04 pm

    *pats on back*… Great job AM

  25. 25 Brian Hall 22/08/2011 at 3:26 am

    Suggestion; emulate or recruit some gormless BBC watchers and have them innocently query Auntie about which paper received the leaks.

    The responses, or lack of, might be amusing.


  1. 1 Friday Post(s) | Calling England Trackback on 19/08/2011 at 6:35 pm
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