Police 'told to leave palace nuts'

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The Queen was "upset" about police officers eating nuts left out at Buckingham Palace, the trial into alleged phone hacking at the News of the World (NotW) has heard.

She was "irritated" by officers eating the snacks, according to an email sent by Clive Goodman, former royal editor at the now-defunct Sunday tabloid newspaper.

A memo was sent to palace officers, telling them to "keep their sticky fingers out", the Old Bailey heard.

In the email to former NotW editor Andy Coulson, which Mr Goodman had sent to himself, he wrote: "Problem is that police on patrol eat the lot... memo now gone around to all palace cops telling them to keep their sticky fingers out."

Prosecutor Andrew Edis QC told the jury that the Queen was "upset" about the behaviour of the officers, according to Goodman's email.

"Apparently they were helping themselves to nuts," the barrister said.

"They were all being scoffed by police. That irritated Her Majesty apparently."

In the email sent in March 2005, Goodman claimed he knew the printer doing the order of service for the Prince of Wales's wedding to the Duchess of Cornwall and had a man checking out the wedding invitations, the jury was told.

"Only person to accept so far is Tony Blair," he wrote.

Goodman, 56, from Addlestone, Surrey, is charged with former spin doctor Coulson with conspiring to commit misconduct in public office.

Goodman and Coulson, 45, from Charing, Kent, face two allegations that they conspired together and with other unknown people to commit misconduct in public office between August 31 2002 and January 31 2003, and between January 31 2005 and June 3 2005.

Coulson is also accused of conspiring to hack phones between October 3 2000 and August 9 2006.

That charge is also faced by former NotW and Sun editor Rebekah Brooks, 45, of Churchill, Oxfordshire, Ian Edmondson, 44, of Raynes Park, south west London, and former managing editor Stuart Kuttner, 73, of Woodford Green, Essex.

Brooks also faces two counts of conspiring with others to commit misconduct in public office - one between January 1 2004 and January 31 2012, and the other between February 9 2006 and October 16 2008 - linked to alleged inappropriate payments to public officials.

She also faces two allegations of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice - one with her former personal assistant Cheryl Carter, 49, of Chelmsford, Essex, between July 6 and 9 2011, and a second with her husband, Charles Brooks, and former News International head of security Mark Hanna and others between July 15 and July 19 2011.

Amid laughter in court, Mr Justice Saunders joked with the jury that the claim that officers were stealing nuts was "an unproven allegation".

In another email sent in October 2005, Goodman discussed payment to a military colleague of the Duke of Cambridge, in which he referred to William being nicknamed "Prince Dynamo" because of his fitness levels, the jury was told.

According to Goodman's email about the Queen, staff had put out a selection of nuts including cashews, almonds and Bombay mix around the palace.

"Queen so narked she has started marking the bowls to see when the levels dipped," he wrote.

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