Caught on Camera: Charlie Brooks and a ” disappearing ” laptop -now you see it, now you don’t

David Hencke comment: There is a delicious irony in this evidence that top News International executives accused of authorising hacking and payments to officials should be so paranoid  themselves about spying that are continually sweeping their offices and homes for bugs and end up being videoed on a private security camera in an underground car park.


By Martin Hickman

Rebekah Brooks’s husband was filmed by closed-circuit cameras going into the basement of an apartment block with an envelope and a laptop – and returning a few seconds later without either.

CCTV pictures of Charlie Brooks were shown to the jury at the phone hacking trial as evidence of an alleged plot by the Brooks’s to hide evidence from detectives investigating hacking at the News International.

The footage was shot at 12.14pm on 17 July 2011, 12 minutes after Mrs Brooks was arrested on suspicion of intercepting voicemails while at the News of the World.

According to the prosecution, Mrs Brooks, Mr Brooks and NI’s head of security, Mark Hanna, plotted together to pervert the course of justice between 14 July and 19 July 2011.

Mark Bryant-Heron, for the prosecution, gave the jury at the Old Bailey a timeline of the events of 17 July.

In the morning, he said, Mrs Brooks and a security guard had travelled by car from Enstone in Gloucestershire to Lewisham police station in London where she was due to be questioned. Another associate of hers followed in a second car.

At 12.02pm, shortly after she arrived at the police station, Mrs Brooks was arrested.

The court was then shown a short burst of CCTV footage from 11.52am showing Mr Brooks and his solicitor Angus McBride arriving at Chelsea Harbour in London where the Brooks’s had a flat.

In further CCTV pictures timed at 12.14pm – 12 minutes after the arrest of his wife – Mr Brooks was seen entering the basement car park of the complex.

After apparently loitering momentarily by a pillar, Mr Brooks walked around the pillar and toward the camera carrying a Jiffy bag and a laptop computer. He then disappeared from view.

A few seconds later, at 12.15pm, Mr Brooks walked back past the camera and towards the pillar empty-handed, without the bag or the laptop.

Closing his remarks for the afternoon, Mr Bryant-Heron said that the jury would see further CCTV footage tomorrow.

Mrs Brooks, Mr Brooks and Mr Hanna deny conspiring to pervert the course of justice.

This post originally appeared on website last night.

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