Newspaper groups, phone hacking victims, the former News International chief executive, police and politicians were amongst those who have applied for core participant status at the Leveson Inquiry today.

They made their submissions to Lord Justice Leveson in court 76 of the Royal Courts of Justice this morning (Tuesday, 6 September 2011).

As well as Guardian News and Media and Express Newspapers, which made submissions, Associated Newspapers were present at the hearing, but decided not to put forward an application as “interested individuals” were out of the country.

Gerry and Kate McCann; the landlord of murdered architect Jo Yeates, Chris Jefferies; Tessa Jowell MP and her husband David Mills; Denis MacShane MP; Brian Paddick (Lib Dem Mayoral candidate); solicitors Mark Lewis and Mark Thompson; F1 boss Max Mosley; comedian Steve Coogan; former footballer Paul Gascoigne; and former MP George Galloway all applied via their lawyers to become core participants in the inquiry.

Former News International CEO Rebekah Brooks’ lawyer said today he would not be pressing for core participant status for his client for module 1 of the inquiry, which is due to look into the relationship between press and public, but that he would be applying at a later stage.

Barrister David Sherborne, representing Max Mosley, Chris Bryant MP, and Lord Prescott amongst others, submitted applications for several of his clients, including one whose identity is protected by a High Court anonymity order, only known by the initials HJK.

The Met Police Service decided not to apply for module 1, but may do so later, whilst Acting Commissioner Tim Godwin has confirmed his application for module 1 of part 1 of the inquiry.

Both the Metropolitan Police Authority and former Assistant Commissioner John Yates withdrew their applications to become core participants in the first module of the inquiry.

The lawyer of private investigator Jonathan Rees also submitted an application to Lord Justice Leveson, claiming the actions of media such as BBC Radio 4 and Panorama, which featured material which was “unused material in a criminal case” for their programmes on Mr Rees, should be examined.

Mr Rees was one of the men acquitted earlier this year of the murder of private investigator Daniel Morgan, found with an axe embedded in his skull in a pub car park in Sydenham, south east London, in 1987.

Lord Justice Leveson said he would consider the application, but that the inquiry would not be looking into “who did what to whom”.

Free expression organisations English PEN and Index on Censorship also submitted applications at the hearing.

According to Rule 5 of the Inquiries Rules 2006, core participants will have “played, or may have played, a direct and significant role in relation to the matters to which the inquiry relates”, will have had “a significant interest in an important aspect of the matters to which the inquiry relates” or “may be subject to explicit or significant criticism during the inquiry proceedings or in the report, or in any interim report”.

Lord Justice Leveson will decide who qualifies according to the rules in the next few days. The next pre-hearing of the inquiry is likely to happen before the end of the month.

Inquiry Facts:

  • The inquiry is divided into two parts – each part divided into modules
  • Module 1 of part 1 of the inquiry will be looking into the relationship between press and public
  • The following modules will be looking into the relationship between the press and politicians and the press and the police
  • Seminars on topics such as the law, media regulation, ethics of journalism and the practice and pressures of investigative reporting are due to be held in October 2010

Thais Portilho-Shrimpton is a journalist with 6 years of experience and Hacked Off campaign co-ordinator.

This post originally appeared on the Hacked Off blog and is reproduced with permission and thanks