WEB OF INFLUENCE: HOW THE DAY UNFOLDED AT THE LEVESON INQUIRY AND IN WESTMINSTER

10.30 - The Strand
Rupert Murdoch appears before the Leveson Inquiry. Seeming much more confident than the contrite performance he gave to the Commons committee in July, he insists: “I’ve never asked a prime minister for anything”.

11.40
Murdoch defends his media empire: “I go to the polls every day… people can choose to stop buying my newspapers at any time.” He adds that his newspapers can and often do print stories that he does not agree with personally.

12.50
The questions turn to his relationship with Gordon Brown. Murdoch claims that the former Prime Minister declared war on News Corp, but he was “not in a balanced state of mind”. He claims Brown “knew very well” that The Sun had not hacked into his personal medical records.

14.00
Outside the court, lobby group Avaaz launches a campaign demanding Jeremy Hunt’s resignation.

Meanwhile Murdoch says it is “a complete myth... that I used the influence of The Sun or supposed political power to get favourable treatment."

16.00
Following Murdoch’s evidence, former Prime Minister Gordon Brown releases a statement claiming he never threatened to “make war” with News Corp.

11.30 - Westminster
Jeremy Hunt’s special adviser Adam Smith resigns from his post in the wake of emails showing his close contact with News Corp execs. He admits his actions went “too far” and gave the impression of a cosy relationship. He says this was done with the culture secretary’s knowledge.

12.00
David Cameron uses Prime Minister’s Questions to pledge his “full support” for Hunt, though he admits: “We all did too much cosying up to Rupert Murdoch.”

Ed Miliband meanwhile blasts the “shadow of sleaze” that Hunt is casting over the coalition.

12.30
Jeremy Hunt makes a short statement insisting he has “strictly followed due process”. He spends over an hour answering questions from MPs, distancing himself from Smith and promising to give full answers when he appears at Leveson himself.

13.30
David Cameron asks the cabinet secretary to write to government departments to clarify how to handle “quasi-judicial” cases such as Hunt’s scrutiny of the News Corp bid.