Rebekah Brooks: I feel vindicated by acquittal

Associated Press
View photos
Rebekah Brooks, left, former News International chief executive, accompanied by her husband Charlie, right, pose for the photographers as she arrives to talk to members of the media, in central London, Thursday, June 26, 2014. Brooks was acquitted after a near 8 month long trial centering on illegal activity at the heart of Rupert Murdoch's newspaper empire but Former News of the World editor Andy Coulson was convicted of phone hacking. The nearly eight-month trial was triggered by revelations that for years the News of the World used illegal eavesdropping to get stories, listening in on the voicemails of celebrities, politicians and even crime victims. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

LONDON (AP) — Rebekah Brooks says she is innocent of phone hacking and other crimes and feels vindicated by a jury's unanimous decision to acquit her.

The former News of the World tabloid editor made her first public statement since being cleared this week of conspiring to hack phones, bribe officials and obstruct police.

Standing Thursday beside her husband Charles — who was also acquitted — Brooks said the last few years "have been tough." She said "I have learnt some valuable lessons and hopefully I am the wiser for it."

Brooks said she would offer support to former colleagues who still face charges.

Dozens of journalists have been arrested since the revelation that Rupert Murdoch's now-shuttered News of the World eavesdropped on the voicemails of thousands of people.