On Friday, Glenn Mulcaire, the private investigator who was jailed for six months in 2007 for intercepting the voice-mail messages of aides to the royal family, disclosed the names of the News of the World senior staff who instructed him to carry out the phone hacking.
This was done through his solicitor, Sarah Webb of law firm Payne Hicks Beach, who handed over the information under court order to lawyers for an alleged phone hacking victim. The release of the NoW names into the wider domain will have to await a legal challenge opposing the release by Payne Hicks Beach on the grounds of confidentiality.
Webb told The Guardian Tuesday: "The issues of confidentiality are of concern to the Metropolitan Police. ...The issue is not that my client requires to keep matters confidential but rather that the police require him to."
This is in order not to compromise Scotland Yard's Operation Wheeting investigation into phone hacking, she said.
Webb also confirmed that Mulcaire lodged papers at the High Court against News International, the writ being received by the company on 17 August, claiming that News International was contractually obliged to pay his legal fees.
News International earlier that week disclosed to the Commons' Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee that it had paid just under a quarter-million pounds of Mulcaire's legal bill before James Murdoch, head of News International's parent company, decided to end the arrangement this July.
Mulcaire really has become a victim of his own former machinations, but one less worry for him will be that celebrity couple Leslie Ash and Lee Chapman have settled their claim against him and News Group Newspapers, the publishers of NoW.
The couple announced in a statement to the media: "However, we remain concerned that the practices complained of against NGN, are likely to have been prevalent within a number of other media publishers, and we will be instructing our lawyer, Charlotte Harris of Mishcon De Reya, to take action against other newspapers in due course."
This scandal may not be drastically affecting on The Guardian's sales figures but it appears to be contributing a healthy crust for parts of the legal profession!
In an article for the paper on 24 August, Mark Thompson, director general of the BBC, criticised James Murdoch for a statement he made at a media festival in Edinburgh in 2009: "The only reliable, durable and perpetual guarantor of independence is profit."
Thompson suggests that after the hacking of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler's phone, which led to the closure of NoW, other virtues were as important, "matters of personal conduct and criminality and above all ethics and values." He concludes that the perpetual guarantor of independence was not "profit" but integrity.
Leaving criminality aside, would setting the bar so high leave room for a tabloid press, one less concerned with what "is in the public interest" and more "what the public is interested in?"
An article in PressGazette Tuesday, quoting The Guardian, states: "News organisations are being pressured into handing over footage of the London riots." Apparently there is a marked reluctance to comply which may well compel the Met and other police forces to obtain the video footage by court order.
Besides The Guardian, media organisations refusing the request include the BBC, The Times and ITN.
"Each of the media groups said they would fiercely resist the demands to avoid being seen as an evidence-gathering arm of the police," The Guardian wrote
Granting that they may be forced to comply under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act, the paper noted: "Under PACE, the judge is supposed to weigh the interest of the police in obtaining evidence with the public interest in a free press."
Police requests and media resistance have been going on now for the best part of a month and may continue for a while yet.
Dominic Ponsford, writing in the PressGazette on 11 August, reported that Prime Minister David Cameron believed news broadcasters should hand over riot footage to the police, telling the House of Commons meeting in emergency session:
"Everyone has a responsibility. The media has a responsibility and I hope they will accept it."
The hacking of Milly Dowler's phone, with the removal of messages which gave both family and police the impression that the poor child was still alive, was an action that went beyond the pale. It led to the destruction of a newspaper with dire consequences for its staff and a criminal investigation into some senior members or former members of that staff. Until that bombshell, the phone hacking scandal was winding down as a story, the victims being celebrities or politicians.
Was it a criminal act to hack into the phones of MPs and pop and film stars? Yes, most certainly. If I were one, would I like it? Certainly not.
Can phone hacking, "alleged" still in the majority of cases, be compared with rioting, looting, arson, murder and assault? This member of the public thinks it doesn't even begin to and the media who have the photographic or video footage of these terrible events in August of 2011 should bear in mind that the "public interest" in this matter is very much on the side of the police.