Charlie Brooks hid his 'smut' to protect his ex-Murdoch CEO wife

Mon Mar 31, 2014 7:15am EDT
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By Michael Holden

LONDON (Reuters) - Charlie Brooks, the husband of Rupert Murdoch's former British newspaper chief, told a London court on Monday he hid his porn collection from police investigating phone-hacking because he feared leaks to the press which would embarrass his wife.

Brooks' wife Rebekah is on trial at London's Old Bailey accused of conspiracy to hack phones and authorizing illegal payments to public officials. They are both accused of attempting to pervert the course of justice by hindering the police investigation.

Five others are also on trial over alleged criminal activity centered on Murdoch's now defunct News of the World tabloid. They all deny the charges.

Rebekah Brooks was arrested in July 2011 at the height of a phone-hacking scandal that rocked Murdoch's News Corp. empire and shook Britain's political establishment.

On the day of her arrest, her husband Charlie, a former racehorse trainer, was caught on close circuit television footage hiding a brown bag and a computer behind bins in the car park of their flat in central London.

The jury has already heard that the bag contained DVDs of lesbian porn films.

Brooks, 51, said the DVDs were of "an embarrassing nature" and the computer "also had some smut on it" as well as items linked to a book he was writing.

"I imagined 20 policemen coming in and everything down and looking under every nook and cranny," he said, saying he had acted "incredibly stupidly and rashly".   Continued...

Former News International executive Rebekah Brooks and her husband Charlie arrive at the Old Bailey in central London March 17, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Winning