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Operation Elveden: Former Daily Mirror journalist and eight others to be charged

20/08/2013

Gregor McGill, a senior lawyer with the Crown Prosecution Service, whose team handles CPS decision making and potential prosecutions in relation to the ongoing phone hacking investigations and other related matters, said: "This announcement relates to five files of evidence from the Metropolitan Police Service.

"Greig Box Turnbull, Grant Pizzey, Desra Reilly, Marc Alexander and one other

"It is alleged that Grant Pizzey, a prison officer at HMP Belmarsh, and his partner Desra Reilly provided information to Greig Box Turnbull, a former journalist at the Daily Mirror, in exchange for payment.

"It is alleged that between 1 December 2005 and 31 January 2012, Grant Pizzey and Desra Reilly received almost £20,000 in exchange for over 40 pieces of information about incidents that took place within the prison, a number of which related to high profile prisoners.

"It is also alleged that between 1 February 2006 and 31 December 2009, Marc Alexander, formerly a prison officer at HMP Holloway, received £2,700 for information sold to Greig Box Turnbull also relating to events within the prison in which he worked.

"Following careful review of the evidence, we have concluded that Greig Box Turnbull should face two charges of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office, one reflecting a conspiracy with Grant Pizzey and Desra Reilly, who should be charged as co-conspirators, and the second reflecting a conspiracy with Marc Alexander, who should also be charged as a co-conspirator.

"This file of evidence also included allegations against one other member of the public and it was determined there was insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that no further action should be taken in relation to the allegations against this individual. Due to ongoing proceedings it would be inappropriate to say any more about this decision at this stage.

"Graham Dudman and John Troup

"It is alleged that between 5 September 2002 and 27 September 2002, Graham Dudman, who held a number of editorial roles at The Sun newspaper, requested the authorisation of payments of £3,000 to one or more police officers in exchange for information relating to ongoing police investigations.

"It is also alleged that between 23 June 2002 and 6 December 2007, Graham Dudman, who later became Managing Editor, authorised payments to public officials. This information related to the health of a Broadmoor patient, details of an incident at a hospital and details of an incident relating to army combat.

"It is further alleged that Graham Dudman approved a payment requested by John Troup, a former journalist at The Sun newspaper, for information relating to the death of a prison inmate.

"Following careful consideration of the evidence we have concluded that Graham Dudman should be charged with three counts of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office, one reflecting conspiracy with John Troup, who should also be charged as a co-conspirator.

"Vince Soodin

"It is alleged that between 18 June 2010 and 20 July 2010, Vince Soodin, a journalist with The Sun newspaper, provided payment to a police officer in exchange for information including contact details for witnesses in police investigations.  It is alleged that a payment of £500 was made in exchange for this information.

"Having carefully reviewed the evidence, we have concluded that Vince Soodin should be charged with conspiring with a police officer to commit misconduct in public office.

"Darren Jennings

"It is alleged that Darren Jennings, a police officer with Wiltshire Police, provided information to The Sun newspaper in relation to a police officer who was facing criminal proceedings. It is alleged that on or around 6 September 2010 he sought payment of £10,000 in exchange for personal background information about the police officer and other individuals who were in police custody at the time.

"Following careful review of the evidence, we have concluded that Darren Jennings should be charged with misconduct in public office.

"Alan Ostler

"It is alleged that between 1 June 2008 and 10 July 2008, Alan Ostler, formerly an assistant technical instructor at Broadmoor Hospital, provided information to journalists at The Sun and the Daily Mirror.

"It is alleged that Alan Ostler received payment of £900 from the Daily Mirror in exchange for information relating to patients and incidents inside Broadmoor Hospital.

"Following careful review of the evidence, we have concluded that Alan Ostler should be charged with misconduct in public office.

"All of these matters were considered carefully in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors and the DPP's guidelines on the public interest in cases affecting the media. These guidelines ask prosecutors to consider whether the public interest served by the conduct in question outweighs the overall criminality before bringing criminal proceedings.

"Accordingly, we have authorised the institution of proceedings against nine individuals and all nine will appear before Westminster Magistrates' Court on 5 September 2013.

"May I remind all concerned that proceedings for criminal offences involving these nine individuals will now be commenced and that each has a right to a fair trial. It is very important that nothing is said, or reported, which could prejudice that trial. For these reasons, it would be inappropriate for me to comment further."

Ends

Notes to Editors

  1. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926
  2. The DPP has set out what the public can expect from the CPS in the Core Quality Standards document published in March 2010.
  3. The CPS consists of 13 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition, there are three specialised national divisions: Central Fraud Division, Special Crime and Counter Terrorism, and Organised Crime. In 2011-2012, The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Department of Health (DoH) prosecution functions were transferred to the CPS. A telephone service, CPS Direct, provides out-of-hours advice and decisions to police officers across England and Wales.
  4. In 2012-2013 the CPS employed around 6840 people (full time equivalent as at March 2013) and prosecuted 804,959 cases with 97,182 of these in the Crown Court, and the remaining 707,777 in the magistrates' courts. Of those we prosecuted, 78,387 defendants were convicted in the Crown Court and 610,213 in the magistrates' courts. In total 85.5% of cases prosecuted resulted in a conviction. Further information can be found on the CPS website.
  5. The CPS, together with ACPO and media representatives, has developed a Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media. This sets out the type of prosecution material that will normally be released, or considered for release, together with the factors we will take into account when considering requests. Read the Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media.