Index on Censorship is appalled by reports that the Metropolitan Police is seeking a court order under the Official Secrets Act to force Guardian journalists to reveal sources in the phone-hacking scandal investigation.
Index on Censorship Chief Executive John Kampfner commented: “Scotland Yard’s outrageous and unjustified attempt to force the Guardian to reveal its sources in its phone hacking investigation is a direct attack on a free press. This is a shocking move to intimidate the media using the Official Secrets Act, one of the state’s most draconian pieces of legislation.
The Guardian is to be praised for pursuing the phone hacking case where the Metropolitan police failed — and for exposing the extent of the scandal. Protection of sources is a crucial tenet of investigative journalism and must be respected.