Piers Morgan Defends Himself in Phone-Hacking Inquiry, Refuses to Disclose Details
Piers Morgan has given his testimonial before a media ethics inquiry about his alleged involvement in Britain's phone hacking scandal. Speaking via video link from Los Angeles on Tuesday, December 20, the "Piers Morgan Tonight" host denied that phone hacking had taken place during his stint as an editor at the Daily Mirror.
When asked about the issue, Morgan told Robert Jay, the top lawyer for the Leveson Inquiry, "I have no reason... to believe it was going on." When Jay pressed him by asking, "You don't believe so or you are sure?", the 46-year-old journalist said in response, "To the best of my recollection, I do not believe so."
While acknowledging that phone hacking by the tabloids was a "widespread practice", Piers denied it was "endemic" at the Mirror. "Not a single person has made a formal complaint against a Daily Mirror journalist," he insisted. "Certainly all journalists knew they had to act within the confines of the law. This was enshrined within their contracts."
When grilled about whether or not he had listened to a voicemail Paul McCartney left for Heather Mills, Piers confessed, "Yes, I believe it was yes." The former "America's Got Talent" judge, however, refused to disclose any further details. "I can't discuss where that tape was played or who made - it would compromise a source," he reasoned.
Though inquiry chairman Lord Justice Leveson told him he would be happy to call Mills "to give evidence as to whether she authorized you to listen to her voicemails," Piers was adamant in refusing to reveal his source. "All we know for a fact about Lady Heather Mills McCartney is that in their divorce case Paul McCartney stated as a fact that she had recorded their conversations and given them to the media," he added.
During the inquiry, Piers returned the question by asking, "How much privacy are you entitled to if you yourself use your privacy for commercial gain?" He explained, "I have very little sympathy with celebrities who sell their weddings for a million pounds ... and then expect to have privacy if they get caught having affairs, for example, it seems to me a nonsensical position to adopt."
- 'Game of Thrones' Set to End With Season 8, Spin-Off Plan Confirmed
- Morgan Freeman Eyed to Join Disney's New 'Nutcracker' Film
- Get Your First Look at Tyler Hoechlin as Clark Kent on 'Supergirl'
- Taika Waititi Hints at Thanos' Connection to 'Thor: Ragnarok' in New Photo
- Lindsey Vonn Accidentally Flashes Underwear on the Red Carpet
- Rihanna Swarmed by Her Fans in 'Goodnight Gotham' Music Video
- Tony Parker Welcomes Second Child With Wife Axelle Francine
- Candice Swanepoel Bares Baby Bump While Posing Completely Naked in This Photo