Before the trial of Vicky Pryce and Chris Huhne began, the Director of Public Prosecutions said that he had been trying to get evidence from the Sunday Times to use against them. John Witherow, its editor, and Isabel Oakeshott, its political editor, said they would fight his attempt to compromise a source. But, the DPP continued, at the last minute the Sunday Times ‘consented to producing the material in question just before the appeal was due to be heard’.
If you think that their colleagues will now treat Witherow and Oakeshott as pariahs, you do not understand what is going on in journalism. They are mere amateurs when set alongside their employer. To save his leathery hide, Rupert Murdoch responded to the hacking scandal by ordering a team of managers to go through every confidential email and expenses claim in News International and hand compromising evidence to the police.