UK

Rebekah Brooks Husband Tells Coulson: 'I'm Very Sorry, Andy. I'm Sad'

26/06/2014 17:00 BST | Updated 26/06/2014 18:59 BST

Rebekah Brooks and her husband Charlie have finally broken their silence after being found not guilty in the phone hacking trial.

Standing on the steps of their London residence, mobbed by press photographers, the former News International CEO said: "I am innocent of the crimes that I was charged with and I feel vindicated by the unanimous verdicts."

Wearing a dark dress with white butterfly prints on she added: "I am grateful to the jury."

When asked if he had a message for Andy Coulson, her husband added: "I'm very sorry, Andy. I'm sad."

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Rebekah Brooks added: "I would like to say it has been a time of reflection for me. I have learned some valuable lessons and hopefully I am the wiser for it.

"I am incredibly proud of the many journalists I have worked with throughout my career and the great campaigns that we have fought and won.

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Brooks and her husband on the steps of their London home

"All I can say to you all is that today my thoughts are with my former colleagues and their families who face future trials. I am going to do everything I can to support them as I know how anxious the times ahead are.

"What I am going to do now and I hope you don't mind...I can't say too much today. I have to be careful for my former colleagues' sake what I say. My thoughts are with them like I said and their families. Now we are going home to spend some much needed time with Scarlett."

Earlier this week, Brooks was overcome by emotion on hearing she had been acquitted on all charges in the phone hacking trial, as her former lover Andy Coulson was convicted.

She had to be taken away by the court matron after the verdicts were read out, following a seven month trial.

But former No 10 spin doctor Coulson was found guilty of plotting to hack phones while he was editor of the News of the World.

Coulson, who was forced to resign as Prime Minister David Cameron's director of communications over the scandal, now faces the possibility of jail following the high-profile trial at the Old Bailey.

The jury of eight women and three men cleared ex-News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks of all charges.