Phone-hacking trial: Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson's voicemails 'revealed affair', court hears

The trial of former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks, the prime minister's former director of communications Andy Coulson and six others began at the Old Bailey on 28 October. The Drum will be in court for the duration of the trial, which is expected to last at least four months, and will provide comprehensive updates on this blog.

The trial is scheduled to examine seven counts that include conspiracy to intercept communications in the course of their transmission, conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office, and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

Coverage will be provided by James Doleman, who was acclaimed for his exhaustive and responsible reporting of the Tommy Sheridan perjury trial.

After a delay for legal reasons, the jury at the trial of Rebekah Brooks, Andy Coulson and six others returned to their seats at around 3.15pm. Mark Bryant Heron for the prosecution told the jury that when the agreed facts between the defence and the prosecution had been read out on Monday, some had been accidentally omitted. He then read these to the jury.

Trial: The court heard evidence relating to Sven Goran Eriksson

The agreed facts referred to the different methods of intercepting voicemail traffic on different networks and the fact that police had wrongly suspected Milly Dowler’s father with involvement in her disappearance due to his lack of an alibi and interviewed him under caution in April 2002.

The presiding judge, the Hon Mr Justice Saunders, then addressed the jury. He told them that he apologised for the amount of time they had to spend outside of the courtroom while legal matters were discussed, but said that in a trial of this complexity it was "unavoidable". To reduce this, the jury will be excused from attending court for the next three Fridays so that these matters can be dealt with.

Having completed evidence on the alleged hacking of murdered teenager Milly Dowler's voicemails, the prosecution then turned to an accusation relating to the former manager of the England football team, Sven-Goran Eriksson.

Bryant-Heron told the court there was no dispute that convicted phone hacker Glenn Mulcaire had intercepted Eriksson’s voicemails as recordings of his messages were found by police at Mulcaire’s home in 2006. He then moved to another large folder of documents, the “Eriksson timeline”, and called a police officer, detective constable Corrine Young, who would testify to their authenticity.

The court was then taken through the timeline which included records of what the prosecution called “tasking instructions” for Mulcaire, taken from his notebooks, and stories from the News of the World about Eriksson’s relationship with Faria Alam, a staff member at the Football Association.

The headlines read out included “Sven’s Secret Affair” and “I’m giving you chapter and verse”. The content included other stories such as “Secret code for lover”. These stories, the prosecution say, were secured by Mulcaire hacking various phones belonging to the then England manager and the telephone numbers were read to the jury and confirmed by DC Young.

The court then adjourned for the day.

All the defendants continue to deny the charges, the trial at the Old Bailey continues.

Click here to view other posts from The Drum's daily trial coverage

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