Rebekah Brooks formally charged with phone hacking

Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks was formally charged with phone hacking today and will appear in court next month, Scotland Yard said.

Brooks, who is 44, answered bail at Lewisham police station tonight and will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on September 3.

Former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks. Credit: Press Association

Six others journalists from the News of the World, including David Cameron's former spin doctor Andy Coulson, have been officially charged and will appear at the same court on August 16.

The seven stand accused of one general charge of alleged phone hacking between October 2000 and August 2006 that could affect as many as 600 victims.

Brooks, of Churchill, Oxford, and Coulson face specific charges of illegally accessing the voicemail of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler.