News In Depth
Brooks no stranger to controversy
Rebekah Brooks devoted more than two decades to serving the British arm of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation empire before her resignation as the phone-hacking scandal intensified last July.
The 43-year-old's flair for tabloid journalism and dedication to the firm earned her the position of chief executive of News International.
The hacking revelations that finally ended her time at Wapping dogged her tenure in the top job from the start, but she was no stranger to controversy.
While editor of the News of the World, Mrs Brooks, nee Wade, launched a "naming and shaming" campaign identifying paedophiles following the murder of schoolgirl Sarah Payne.
The campaign boosted circulation and eventually led to new legislation - known as Sarah's Law - but was blamed by some for sparking vigilantism and even thwarting police investigations.
Away from the day job, an intriguing private life saw Mrs Brooks thrust briefly into the kind of limelight normally reserved for the subjects of a tabloid exclusive.
While married to former EastEnders actor Ross Kemp, she was arrested, but later released without charge, over claims that she had attacked him.
She dismissed the incident as a row that got out of hand.
The couple divorced and in 2009 she married former racehorse trainer Charlie Brooks, a contemporary of Prime Minister David Cameron at Eton.
The couple became key members of the influential Chipping Norton set, which also includes Mr Cameron and his wife Samantha, Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson, Mr Murdoch's daughter Elisabeth and her PR guru husband Matthew Freud.
The social links between the group, centred in the affluent and picturesque Oxfordshire Tory heartland, have been thrown into the spotlight since the phone-hacking scandal erupted.
In March Mr Cameron was forced to admit riding a retired police horse loaned to Mrs Brooks by Scotland Yard from 2008 to 2010, and his friendship with her was further laid bare at the Leveson Inquiry into press standards last week when she revealed how close she had been to the most powerful people in the country.
She enjoyed dozens of lunches and dinners with successive prime ministers and was so friendly with Mr Cameron that he signed off texts to her with "lots of love", the inquiry heard.
A formidable networker, Mrs Brooks is also said to have been close to former prime minister Tony Blair and her wedding to Mr Brooks was attended by Mr Cameron and then prime minister Gordon Brown.
Her News Corporation career started at the News of the World, where she eventually landed the top job aged 31 in 2000.
In 2003 she became the first woman to edit the Sun and in 2009 became News International chief executive.