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23:07

News International executives should face possibility of jail, says MP | Media | The Guardian

…Labour frontbencher Chris Bryant…believed the case would be seen as “one of the most flagrant examples of a contempt of parliament in parliament’s history”. He told MPs: “It is not just that it was one person at one time, it was not just that it was one organisation for a brief period of time, it’s that a whole series of people systematically, repeatedly lied so as to protect themselves, to protect their commercial interests and to try and make sure they didn’t end up going to prison – that they did fully knowing that they were telling lies to parliament. That, I believe, is a fundamental contempt.” …

…He said: “I believe that this house and the committee itself should consider in turn, firstly whether or not the three individuals mentioned, and corporately News International should be summoned to this house. I believe that it must still be an important power for this house.

“Secondly, they should consider whether individuals should be fined, not least because there have been considerable expenses incurred by parliament and the prosecuting authorities by the process of lying to parliament, and thirdly, it has to be right whether or not to imprison.

“If this had happened in the Scottish parliament, it would have gone on to imprisonment, if it had been a contempt of court it would have led to imprisonment, if it had been perjury of a court, it would have led to imprisonment.”

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