Summary Box: Ex-UK police boss on phone hacking

THE SPEAKER: Former Scotland Yard counterterrorism chief Peter Clarke, who oversaw the much-criticized initial police inquiry into Britain’s phone hacking scandal, testifies at Britain’s official inquiry into media ethics.

WHAT HE SAID: He says a crush of terrorism cases meant his force had no choice but to curtail the investigation into phone hacking.

OTHER CHALLENGES: Clarke says part of the problem was that newspaper publisher News International had stonewalled investigators. Clarke pushed back against allegations that his police force had helped the company cover up its crimes, but he acknowledged overlooking details “which, with hindsight, were very important.”