02/02/2012 03:41 GMT | Updated 02/02/2012 06:23 GMT

The Times Under Investigation Over Computer Hacking, MP Claims

The Times newspaper is being investigated by police over computer hacking, a senior Labour MP has claimed.

Tom Watson, who has campaigned to bring the hacking scandal to light, made a complaint to Scotland Yard over claims the Murdoch-owned broadsheet knew a reporter had hacked into an email account.

Last month the Leveson inquiry into press ethics heard that a reporter had been issued with a formal written warning for professional misconduct for gaining unauthorised access to an email account.

James Harding, the paper's editor, told the inquiry the reporter had been formally disciplined, and has since left the newspaper.

Watson tweeted on Thursday morning:

In a letter to the Met last month Watson urged officers to examine whether a crime had been committed and whether the newspaper had misled the court.

"In an attempt to protect his privacy, the police officer in question sought an injunction," the MP wrote. "Far from putting forward a public interest defence, lawyers representing The Times claimed that the information was obtained through entirely legitimate means...

"It is clear that a crime has been committed - illicit hacking of personal emails. It is almost certain that a judge was misled."

The Metropolitan Police said: "We can confirm that a letter was received on Monday 23 January from Tom Watson. Officers from Operation Tuleta are in contact with Watson in relation to the specific issues he raised. We are not prepared to give a running commentary on the investigation."

A letter sent to Watson the Met said his concerns were under investigation.

A News International spokesperson said the company had no comment.