(Updates with Lachlan’s background in third paragraph)
Feb. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Lachlan Murdoch, the oldest son of News Corp.’s Chief Executive Officer Rupert Murdoch, left London before this weekend’s release of a Sunday version of the Sun tabloid, a spokeswoman said today.
Lachlan accompanied his father on the trip in place of younger brother James, News Corp.’s deputy chief operating officer, who was occupied with other business, according to the New York-based company. The Murdochs flew to the U.K. to reassure employees after reporters were arrested in a bribery probe. Rupert Murdoch said he will stay for several weeks to oversee the release of the new Sunday tabloid under the Sun masthead.
Lachlan spent two hours touring the newsroom on Feb. 17. Lachlan, 40, stepped away from News Corp. in 2005 to focus on businesses outside of his family. This month, he was named chairman of Ten Networks, an Australian television broadcaster. News Corp. has been battling allegations that its U.K. reporters hacked into voicemails and paid police and other public officials for stories.
Evidence of hacking led to the closing of the company’s News of the World Sunday tabloid and police investigations have resulted in more than two dozen arrests.
Ten employees of the Sun have been arrested so far and Lachlan’s brother James, who oversaw the U.K. operations, has been compelled to appear before Parliament to testify about how much he knew.
--Editors: Robert Valpuesta, Simon Thiel.
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