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Managing editor 'appalled' at hacking claim

THE former managing editor of the News Of The World told police he had never hacked a telephone or bribed a policeman, a court heard.

Stuart Kuttner, who said he was "shocked" to be accused of such behaviour, made the blanket denials in his August 2011 police interviews, transcripts of which were read to the jury at the hacking trial at the Old Bailey, London.

Mr Kuttner claimed that in contrast to such underhand behaviour, he had worked hard to uphold strong standards of journalism across the industry while he worked at the newspaper.

"I will say now I am utterly appalled at the allegations made against me personally," Mr Kuttner said in his police interview.

"I spent 29 years at the News Of The World and much other time in Fleet Street involved in committees that set standards.

"I worked with Lord Wakeham after the death of the Princess Of Wales involving the standard that the paparazzi might work under.

"I was involved right in the beginning in assisting the editor of the construction of the editors' code of practice and much else.

"I've never knowingly, and I use the world quite consciously and deliberately, I have never knowingly bribed a policeman, which appears to be among your allegations.

"I have never knowingly played any part whatsoever in the hacking or bugging of anybody's telephone and I'm very shocked at the events of today but I'm here to answer your questions and I will continue to do so."

Mr Kuttner, 73, of Essex, and the paper's former editor Andy Coulson deny conspiring to hack phones between October 3, 2000 and August 9, 2006. Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks, who is also a former News Of The World and Sun editor, also denies the same charge.

Ms Brooks and Mr Coulson also face other charges, which they deny.

The trial continues.

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