back to article Paul McCartney's ex-wife makes phone-hacking claim

The former wife of Paul McCartney has alleged that a senior journalist working at Mirror Group Newspapers intercepted voicemails left for her by the Beatles star. Heather Mills told the BBC's Newsnight programme yesterday that the alleged phone-hacking incident took place in 2001, when Macca was her boyfriend. She said the …


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  1. fixit_f

    Apparently the first thing she did with her divorce settlement was to buy a plane....

    She still uses a razor on the other leg though.

  2. Jon Press

    "Our position is clear"

    Methinks the daily doth protest too little.

  3. Chris Walker 1

    Pull the other one...

    Next she will be telling us she has one leg!

  4. Uncle Slacky

    She hasn't got...

    ...a leg to stand on!

    1. Willington

      I was wondering...

      ...who would be the first. You win!

  5. Flugal

    Heather Mills

    Shame this allegation isn't made by somebody who has a remaining shred of credibility.

    1. stu 4


      I mean - how a regular person would react:

      - the moment the hacking story broke -talk to police (media optional) and cry 'me too' and here's the evidence.

      how mills trash reacts:

      - call PR company for advice. They tell her to leave it a week or so to get max impact and not get smothered by others. then announce to media (never mind police - that won't help exposure).

      1. DAN*tastik

        Anything that gets her on telly...

        I was seriously amazed that she didn't rush to Gatwick or wherever complaining that she couldn't go to Turkey because of Holidays 4U UK collapsing.

  6. Dele-Himself


    I like how its taken her ten years to pipe up and come forward with this information

    On the plus side, hopefully she'll do the rounds on TV and we can watch her go insane again

    1. Wize

      Its because...

      ...she can smell the money.

      1. Daniel 1

        Also because...

        Many journalists are too busy diligently researching the veracity of reports that Internet Explorer users are all thick, to be bothered with whether or not other journalists are illegally bugging people.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oooh, look at me, my phones been hacked, I must be famous

    >Mills challenged the reporter, who then – it was claimed – admitted the messages had been intercepted.

    Sorry, but I don't think she's the sort of woman who would have kept quiet very long if a journalist had admitted such a thing.

    1. Snowy Silver badge


      I too was wondering why she did not sue at the time...

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  8. TeeCee Gold badge

    Of course it was Mirror journalists hacking her phone!

    Well, either them or Space Aliens....

    ....or the little Teapot people....

  9. JimC

    > All our journalists work within the law

    Does that mean they work within the scope/reach of the Law? Its a suprisingly ambiguous statement, still, I suppose something on the lines of "our journalists do nothing illegal" would be holding a considerable hostage to fortune...

    As for all the leg jokes, just how old are some of you folks?

  10. Graham Marsden

    NotW 'was labelled a "toxic" brand'

    It was a poisonous rag long before this controversy...!

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not that she's an attention whore or anything.

    Why are most of the media running this as if it is an undisputed fact? Most of the versions of the story I've seen start with a headling that cleary states the Mirror hacked her phone. Then at least the first paragraph confirms it. It's only when you get deeper into the story that you see that this is a claim being made by a complete attention whore and known liar.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why come forward now?

    Perhaps its linked to the fact that various news outlets have dug up Piers Morgan's comments that he once heard this voicemail and she's providing her side of the story.

    N.b. I remember when the NotW hacking story was developing that on a discussion about it on, I think, R5 and someone asked if it was just the NotW doing this that one of the people discussing this commented how it was probably quite instructive to note that the story was only really being pushed by the Guardain and Independent and it might be considered to be surprising that the main rivals of the NotW and Sun weren't making a big deal about it!

    1. Microphage

      Private Investigations

      @anon: it might be considered to be surprising that the main rivals of the NotW and Sun weren't making a big deal about it!

      It is curious that the main alleged wrongdoers in this saga the politicians, the police and the media are investigating themselves. I wonder just what they will eventually come up with, a few bad apples, procedures-now-in-place, never happen again etc.

  13. Yet Another Commentard

    Morgan's quote

    "To reiterate, I have never hacked a phone, told anyone to hack a phone, nor to my knowledge published any story obtained from the hacking of a phone."

    A couple of things here. I have not read his (auto)biography, but I am intrigued to know how he thought the "player" of the recording had obtained it legally, and then decided not to run the story. Being the fine upstanding member of the community he is, why did he not contact the police then. He must have known hacking was a dubious activity at the least, or he would have condoned it, surely? Assuming it was not a Trinity Mirror employee he would do no harm to the Mirror. If it was, then he would have been removing a bad apple.

    "To my knowledge" is a very interesting turn of phrase. How does plausible deniability work again?

    1. Marcus Aurelius

      Quite subtle cunning plan

      He's not denying someone hacked a phone, just that he was compliant with the law in not publishing a story which he knew was obtained from phone hacking.

      It appears that a common news industry trick would be to get the information through phone hacking, then tell the victim that they knew what had happened, and "invite" them to give their side of the story. Of course, once the victim told everything to the reporter they didn't need the illegally obtained details any more as they had corroboration of the story right out of the horses mouth, and could therefore publish away.....

    2. nyelvmark

      "To my knowledge" is a very interesting turn of phrase.

      And so are "it is believed that", "informed sources say", "an unidentified spokesman told us", etc.

      Welcome to the wonderful world of journalism. If you need a pinch of salt, drop round and we can look each other in the eyes as we swap lies.

  14. Rob Crawford
    Black Helicopters

    Am I the only one

    who wouldn't be surprised if the voice mail was leaked by a friend of Heather, because somebody who was 'only a member of the Beatles' was getting more attention than her?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    giving Heather Mills the oxygen of publicity is a shameful act with which no reputable news organisation should be involved.

    1. Valerion

      Same could be said

      for Piers Morgan.

      1. Havin_it

        RE: Same could be said

        of giving Piers Morgan the oxygen of ... well, oxygen.

  16. hi_robb

    I heard

    She's going on out a limb with this accusation.

  17. Rosco

    She must have been hopping mad when she found out

    I am ashamed of myself

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    RIPA was passed in 2000

    So I think that if the date is correct it was criminal. Although I don't know if there was any particular implementation/activation on the act which may make a difference.

    Do you think the US would extradite Piers? That would be fun!

  19. Rufus
    Paris Hilton

    As Judge Bennett put it....

    ...the last time she was before a member of the courts:

    "Having watched and listened to her give evidence, having studied the documents, and having given in her favour every allowance for the enormous strain she must have been under (and in conducting her own case) I am driven to the conclusion that much of her evidence, both written and oral, was not just inconsistent and inaccurate but also less than candid,” the judge said. "Overall she was a less than impressive witness."

    Personally I think the Judge was just being polite. The Mirror's headline referred to her as "liar and fantasist Heather Mills" which some would say is closer to the truth!

  20. Cat Sitting

    There are some snidey little SH12s out the in the bloggosphere

    Heather Mills may have a less than perfect character, but that doesn't mean that everything she says is unconnected with reality. There have been anecdotal stories around for quite some time that newspapers knew of the messages Paul McCartney had left for Heather Mills.

    Perhaps the reason this story is getting some real air time is that the press, the police, politicians and the public are prepared to listen at last.

    Did Heather Mills approach Newsnight or did Newsnight ask for her comment, knowing the old rumours? I suppose the cyber-bullies don't really care about the answer to that.

    1. Mako

      You're way too credulous.

      From the article;

      "You've obviously hacked my phone and if you do anything with this story... I'll go to the police."

      "Hacked"? That conversation (allegedly) took place in 2001. Do you honestly believe that Heather Mills would have used the word "hacked" in that context at that time?

      Even if her voicemails *were* intercepted, that conversation never happened. She's lying through her teeth and her credibility is as low as it's ever been.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        Ok, she's not the best witness, but memory plays tricks - there may well have been a conversation that went along those lines, maybe she said "tapped" there are many words to describe what happened to her phone/voicemail. Also, it's not entirely out of the bounds of reality to think that she actually knew the word "hacked" it's been around for decades in the context of obtaining electronic information or services which aren't yours.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Totally agree...

      I totally agree, I find the bullying behavior in forums such as this one quite disturbing. There is very little debate just a bunch of people queuing up to take the next punch at the bogeyman, or woman in this case. More often than not it's someone who has no way to defend themselves, its pathetic and childish.

      Woe betide anyone who has a different opinion, or a more nuanced opinion that is less than black and white.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Who'd a thunk it?

    Someone to make the tabs seem sympathtic in this whole sorry mess!

    Paris because no one knows how to manipulate the media like her

  22. darklord

    Hmm bank account depletion maybe

    Must be down to her last few million and clearly needs a bit more publicity as no one really cares who she is any more,( a bit like beckams since clearing off to America). has she finally realised she is no longer marketable by the tabloids.

    Shes forgetting these people built her up there'll bring her down to as she washed too much dirty laundry in public and she probably has little to hide anymore that isn't already known about hence the delay.

    Are so called celebreties so stupid that they think by using radio devices bought from the high street they are secure. Of course not its the oly way they know theres still interest in them. Its the Ive got a secret syndrome and guess what it is

    Surely that if you really want something to be kept secret then dont discuss it on a mobile phone and probably in a public place too.

    At least if your caught tapping a landline then its going to be a different outcome in the courts as that type of thing needs authourity fromn the home office I guess.

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