11/02/2012 10:40 GMT | Updated 11/02/2012 13:56 GMT

Police Corruption: Scotland Yard Makes Eight Arrests In Connection To Operation Elveden

Police have arrested five senior Sun journalists and three others including a member of the armed forces in connection to their investigation into corruption and inappropriate payments to police, Operation Elveden, Scotland Yard said on Saturday.

The arrests spread beyond police officers for the first time with a ministry of defence employee and a serving member of the armed forces arrested alongside an officer in the Surrey police on suspicion of "misconduct in a public office".

Five of the arrests were for aiding and abetting misconduct in a public office. All eight people are all being questioned by police.

A statement from News Corporation confirmed that five Sun employees had also been arrested. The Telegraph reports there are fears for the future of the paper following the arrests of the journalits.

The five journalists include chief reporter, associate editor, the picture editor, a chief foreign correspondent and a news editor, Sky News reported.

Police said Wapping offices were being searched and the information had been given to police by News Corproation's "Management and Standards Committee" (MSC).

"The home addresses of those arrested are currently being searched and officers are also carrying out a number of searches at the offices of News International in Wapping, East London," police said.

"It relates to suspected payments to police officers and public officials and is not about seeking journalists to reveal confidential sources in relation to information that has been obtained legitimately."

Operation Elveden runs alongside the Operation Weeting phone hacking inquiry.

MP Chris Bryant questioned if the Sun would be closed, tweeting:

News Corp said: "News Corporation remains committed to ensuring that unacceptable news-gathering practices by individuals in the past will not be repeated and last summer authorised the MSC to co-operate with the relevant authorities.

"The MSC will continue to ensure that all appropriate steps are taken to protect legitimate journalistic privilege and sources, private or personal information and legal privilege.

"News Corporation maintains its total support to the ongoing work of the MSC and is committed to making certain that legitimate journalism is vigorously pursued in both the public interest and in full compliance with the law."

In January five people were arrested over payments to police officers. A serving Scotland Yard officer was arrested on suspicion of receiving illegal payments from journalists in December.

Dominic Mohan, editor of The Sun, today said: "I'm as shocked as anyone by today's arrests but am determined to lead The Sun through these difficult times.

"I have a brilliant staff and we have a duty to serve our readers and will continue to do that. Our focus is on putting out Monday's newspaper."