In an attempt to settle the phone-hacking scandal that led to closure of the News of the World, its owner Rupert Murdoch's News International has reportedly offered £3 million to the family of the murdered teenager Milly Dowler, whose voicemails were unlawfully seized.
Under the settlement agreement offered, £1 million will be donated to the charity, and £2 million will be offered to the Dowler's family. However, no final agreement has been concluded between News International and Dowler's family, whose lawyers were apparently planning for a £3.5 million settlement, sources told The Guardian.
The Dowler's family grabbed the headlines this summer in the phone hacking scandal, which had sent scandal-ridden storm to the Westminster. It was believed that the journalists at the News of the World had reportedly hacked phones of thousands of people, including celebrities and politicians. Widespread public anger has revived the phone-hacking case of teenager Milly Dolwer following her death.
The teenager went missing in March in 2002 and was later found dead. Her voicemails were intercepted and deleted on behalf of the News of the World to make room for new recordings. This had sent a false impression to the family that the teenager was still alive because messages were vanishing.
Murdoch appeared unperturbed by the earlier indictment about his employees' phone-hacking scandal, but was annoyed when the news broke over the hacking into the teenager's phone. He met the Dowler's family to apologise, and also told parliament that he had been humbled by the whole case.
Snapshots of the story
21 March 2002
13 year old teenager Milly Dowler went missing after school in Walton-on-Thames at Surrey.
14 April 2002
News of the World reports the first version story, taking quotes from her voicemails, which were left on her mobile phone. The story is changed for upcoming editions.
20 September 2002
Milly's remains are discovered in forest.
News International members tell MPs that the phone hacking was an inaccessible incident, restricted to royal editor Clive Goodman.
4 July 2011
Dowler family lawyer sought to sue News International after The Guardian reveals Milly's phone was besieged and voicemails erased.
10 July 2011
News International announces the closure of the NOTW, claiming "mistakes" have been done.
15 July 2011
Rupert Murdoch meets the Dowler's family continually apologizes.
19 September 2011
News International seems to agree on £3m settlement with the Dowler's family.