The transcripts of the official inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the press. More…

Sir, I understand that and I do understand that there is a difference between modules 1 and 2 of part 1, and Module 3, and it is for that reason that the number of core participant victims who seek to participate in Module 3 is, as I say, very much reduced.

Can I explain that they fall into two categories? The first category are what I might call the politicians who have either originally been core participant victims through modules 1 and 2, or, in the case of two further politicians whose names have already been identified to the Inquiry -- and I can now mention them, namely Tom Watson and Evan Harris -- they are seeking what I might call fresh participation in Module 3. That's the first category.

Sir, as you say, the remit set out in the terms of reference for Module 3 is to enquire into the culture, practices and ethics of the press, including contacts and relationships between national newspapers and politicians, and one particular aspect of that Inquiry, as I understand it, will be the influence which the press have had over Members of Parliament and those connected with them. Whether that influence is exercised through direct intimidation, we would say, through the publication of articles designed to ensure that those who oppose the interests of the press are either deterred from doing so or vilified, or through intrusion into their private lives, either to find out the sort of person that the politician is or to pressure them into taking a certain course, we say that to that extent, those individuals whom you're aware of, sir -- and I can name them: Chris Bryant, Simon Hughes, Denis MacShane, John Prescott, Clare Ward and Tessa Jowell, in addition to Mr Watson and Mr Harris -- we say they have played a direct and significant role in relation to those matters.

Or, to use the other words of rule 5, they have a significant interest in an important aspect of the matters to which this module relates.

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