Rupert Murdoch pied in the face at hearing

Faith Merino · July 19, 2011 · Short URL:

While the Murdochs denied any knowledge of phone-hacking, 80-year-old Elder Murdoch was pied

Rupert and James Murdoch are currently facing MPs in London over the phone-hacking scandal that just keeps getting worse by the minute—from hacking into a dead girl’s phone to police collusion, muddled murder investigations, and the phone-hacking whistle-blower found dead in his home.  And now it has degenerated to its lowest point: while undergoing questioning, 80-year-old News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch was pied in the face.

The withered, elderly man sat hunched over at the bench as MPs grilled him and his heir-apparent, James Murdoch (chairman of News International), when a young, 20-something man casually approached with a paper plate swirled with shaving cream made to look like a meringue pie.  He attempted to plant the pie in Murdoch’s face but seems to have only gotten him in the shoulder as those around Murdoch leaped to his defense, including his wife, Wendi Deng, who hurled herself at the assailant and slapped him in the face. In fact, it would appear that the assailant got more pie on his own face than Murdoch's.

The assailant was quickly led away by police, but it looks like he’s on Twitter under the account @JonnieMarbles.  Shortly before attacking Murdoch, he tweeted: “It might be quicker if Baby Murdoch simply listed all of the things that he does know.”  Minutes later, he tweeted: “It is a far better thing that I do now than I have ever done before #splat.”

The courtroom drama resolved quickly as Rupert Murdoch took off his soiled coat and agreed to continue with the questioning, which seems to consist entirely of MPs asking Rupert and James whether they knew of the rampant phone-hacking that was taking place at News of the World—to which the Murdochs consistently reply that they didn’t.  This would probably make them the only people in the world who didn’t know of the phone-hacking going on at News of the World, since celebrities and British royalty have been complaining about it for years.  Jude Law, in fact, is suing The Sun—another Murdoch-owned paper.  Earlier this year, Sienna Miller sued News of the World and settled in May for $164,500.

Despite ALL of the evidence pointing to a permissive culture of phone-hacking at News Corp.-owned papers, both Rupert and James Murdoch are adamantly denying any prior awareness of the practice and Rupert Murdoch went so far as to state that he is not responsible for his own company.  When asked if he will step down, however, Murdoch said no. 

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