LONDON, April 18 The former deputy editor of
Rupert Murdoch's British Sun tabloid has been charged with
authorising illegal payments to a public official to get
stories, prosecutors said on Thursday.
Fergus Shanahan is accused of authorising a reporter on the
paper to make two payments totalling 7,000 pounds to an unnamed
official in return for information between August 2006 and
"Following a careful review of the evidence, we have
concluded that Fergus Shanahan, who served as an editor at the
Sun newspaper, should be charged with an offence of conspiring
to commit misconduct in public office," said Alison Levitt,
Legal Advisor to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Shanahan will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on
He is the latest senior figure who worked for News
International, the British newspaper arm of Murdoch's News Corp.
, to face charges over an the long-running police
investigation into phone-hacking and other criminal activities.
The current deputy editor Geoff Webster has also been
charged with making illegal payments to public officials.
Prime Minister David Cameron's former media chief Andy
Coulson, who was editor of Murdoch's News of the World between
2003 and 2007, and Rebekah Brooks, the former boss of News
International, have also been charged with criminal offences.
Last month, two former policemen and an ex-prison officer
were jailed for selling stories to the Sun, while a former a
senior British counter-terrorism police officer was jailed in
February for offering to sell details about the phone-hacking
inquiry to the News of the World in 2010.