News International Chief Rebekah Brooks Quits

Murdoch henchwoman is latest to fall in scandal

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 15, 2011 4:34 AM CDT | Updated Jul 15, 2011 6:31 AM CDT

(Newser) – After weeks of fierce criticism of her role in the British tabloid phone-hacking scandal, Rebekah Brooks is calling it a day. The News International chief executive has announced that Rupert and James Murdoch have accepted her resignation, the Guardian reports. Brooks—who edited the News of the World during some of the years in which the tabloid's reporters hacked phones—says being a "focal point of the debate" was making it impossible to continue as chief of News Corp's British wing.

"I now need to concentrate on correcting the distortions and rebutting the allegations about my record as a journalist, an editor and executive," Brooks said in a statement. "My resignation makes it possible for me to have the freedom and the time to give my full cooperation to all the current and future inquiries." Rupert Murdoch had repeatedly voiced his total support for Brooks, although his daughter Elizabeth recently broke ranks to criticize her, as did the Saudi prince who is News Corp's second-biggest shareholder.

Rupert Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks were all smiles in London last weekend.
Rupert Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks were all smiles in London last weekend.   (AP Photo/Ian Nicholson)
Rebekah Brooks leaves a hotel in central London.
Rebekah Brooks leaves a hotel in central London.   (AP Photo/Sang Tan)
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