UK & World News
Hacking Trial Hears Of Brooks' 'Car Crash' Life
Rebekah Brooks fought back tears today as she told of "intimacy" with colleague Andy Coulson while her relationship with Ross Kemp disintegrated.
The trial was halted briefly as Brooks appeared to lose her composure in the witness box as she was questioned about her personal life.
She described it as "a bit of a car crash for many years".
Her barrister Jonathan Laidlaw QC apologised for bringing up her love life, including her relationship with Kemp and†her affair with her former deputy†Coulson.
Brooks, 45, told the packed courtroom that she first met Kemp in 1995 and they got engaged "quite quickly" the following year, before splitting up in 1997.
But the couple later tried to rekindle their romance.
"We got back together again around the end of 1998," she said. "We started speaking again at my 30th birthday."
Brooks, wearing a grey dress with scalloped detail, went on: "It was a slow process, having gone from meeting to getting engaged and it not working out, we decided to take it a bit easier."
The ex-tabloid editor was near to tears and asked for a break when she was questioned about the possibility of having children with Kemp.
She returned to court to explain how she married Kemp in June 2001 and started fertility treatment, but the marriage began to suffer in 2003.
In a quiet voice, she said: "I think we were both working incredibly long hours ... they are completely different industries and the war in Iraq started pretty soon after I became editor and we were doing 4am, 5am editions.
"Me and my senior team at the Sun moved into a hotel next to Wapping to live and Ross was doing incredibly long hours filming, so 2003 was a tough year for us."
Mr Laidlaw went on to ask about her relationship with Coulson and in particular periods of "physical intimacy" with him which began in around 1998.
She said: "Any affair, by its very nature, is quite dysfunctional. It certainly added a complexity to what was a very good friendship.
"My personal life was a bit of a car crash for many years. It's probably very easy to blame work but the hours were very long and hard and you got thrown together in an industry like that. It was wrong and it shouldn't have happened but things did."
She met her current husband Charlie Brooks in March 2007.
"Ross was a good man but the two of us weren't meant to be and certainly Andy and I weren't meant to be. When I met Charlie, I was happy for the first time," she said.
The couple decided to go for surrogacy because of Brooks's fertility issues, and her cousin agreed to carry their baby.
Their daughter was born on January 25, 2012. Speaking about the decision to use a surrogate, she said: "It's a big thing to do.
"My mum was out shopping in Warrington one day and she bumped into my cousin who I was very close with at school.
"My cousin asked mum how we were getting on, how the latest treatment had gone on and mum said they are going to knock it on the head, I think. They knew it was a very, very small chance anyway, and she said 'I'll do it', and she did."
Earlier Brooks maintained she knew nothing about a £100,000-a-year contract the News of The World had with private investigator Glenn Mulcaire.
The former tabloid editor gave examples of "expensive" one-off payments for what were termed exclusive "buy-ups".
She revealed the behind-the-scenes deals made with celebrities, PR guru Max Clifford and Big Brother contestants.
The court was also told how David Beckham was paid £1m to run excerpts of his autobiography in the Sun and News Of The World.
Brooks, of Churchill, Oxfordshire, denies conspiring to hack phones, conspiring to commit misconduct in public office, and conspiring to cover up evidence to pervert the course of justice.
The trial continues.
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