Rupert Murdoch faces US phone hacking legal action
Published Apr 12 2012, 10:48 BST
By Andrew Laughlin
's News Corporation
is facing a new challenge after a British lawyer announced that he is taking legal action in the United States on behalf of three alleged victims of phone hacking.
Mark Lewis, a prominent figure in the fight against press intrusion and hacking, has said that the three people include a US citizen, a "well-known sports person" and a sports person not in the public eye.
They are all said to be the alleged victims of illegal voicemail interception by the News of the World
, the now defunct Sunday tabloid owned by Murdoch's News International.
"The News of the World
had thousands of people they hacked," Lewis told the BBC
. "Some of them were in America at the time, either travelling or resident there."
The lawyer is due to fly to New York this Saturday, and then will have discussions over the legal action next week. He said News International had not yet responded.
The news represents a major development in the hacking scandal with serious potential legal ramifications for Murdoch, who has attempted to keep the scandal away from America, where News Corp is based.
Previously, the affair has been confined to the UK, where a number of high-profile victims of hacking have already taken legal action against News International.
It emerged recently that the hacking affair has cost Murdoch almost £250m to date
, but that could increase significantly should there be a glut of cases in America.
Jude Law was previously thought to have been one of the celebrities to have had their phone hacked while in the US
, during a call at JFK airport in New York.
However, The Guardian
reports that Law is understood not to be involved in the cases being explored by Lewis and his team.