EXCLUSIVE — FAKE SHEIK CHARGED

THE SUN journalist Mazher Mahmood has been charged with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

FAKE SHEIK IN THE DOCK AFTER YEARS of being accused of lying on oath in criminal cases, Mazher Mahmood is to swop the witness box for the dock ... Photo: BBC

FAKE SHEIK IN THE DOCK
Photo: BBC

The decision follows a Scotland Yard investigation — Operation Silverhawk — and comes after the aborted trial of singer Tulisa Contostavlos in July 2014.

The singer’s prosecution followed a Sun on Sunday sting in June 2013.

After an elaborate operation, Mahmood and his team persuaded Tulisa to contact a friend who then supplied them with drugs.

Judge Alastair McCreath stopped the trial after Mahmood gave contradictory evidence about changes to a statement made by his driver Alan Smith.

Smith has also been charged with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

The two men will appear at Westminster Magistrates Court on October 30. 

In a statement issued through his solicitors Kingsley Napley, Mazher Mahmood said:

“I am deeply disappointed that, after a totally unjustified delay, the Crown Prosecution Service have today informed me that they have decided to charge me with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. 

“I deny the offence. I will vigorously contest it at court. In the meantime I have nothing further to say.”

Nick Vamos, CPS Deputy Head of Special Crime, said:

“After carefully considering all of the evidence the CPS has decided that there is sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and it is in the public interest to charge both men.”

“The decision comes after it was alleged that Mr Smith agreed with Mr Mahmood to change his statement to police as part of a trial in July 2014, and that Mr Mahmood then misled the court.”

“May I remind all concerned that both Mr Mahmood and Mr Smith have a right to a fair trial.”

“It is extremely important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”

“For these reasons it would be inappropriate for any further comment.”

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COMING UP 
A SLICKER FULL OF LIES
THE STORY of Piers Morgan’s involvement in the “Slickergate Affair” of 2000 makes sobering reading. There’s evidence Morgan sacrificed two of his journalists to save his own skin — and that senior Mirror Group managers were in on the plot. The attempt to spin the truth of what happened even involved lying to Lord Leveson …  Part Fve of A Pretty Despicable Man tells the story of a deliberate corporate cover-up  … 

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