LONDON, July 10 (UPI) -- A Scotland Yard assistant commissioner says he underestimated allegations News of the World staff were hacking into private phones six years ago.
In an interview with The Sunday Telegraph, John Yates said he regretted his 2009 decision not to reopen a 2005 investigation into the newspaper's practices.
"I have regrettably said the initial  inquiry was a success. Clearly now, that looks very different," he told the newspaper.
The 168-year-old newspaper, which published its last edition on Sunday, is owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. When allegations emerged days ago about the News of the World paying police for information and employing people to hack into the voice-mail accounts of murder victims and dead soldiers, Murdoch ordered the tabloid shut down.
Yates said when new evidence came to light of improprieties in 2009, he spent only a day considering if a full investigation was warranted.
"I am accountable and it happened on my watch and it's clear I could have done more," he said.
Three people have been arrested so far and more arrests are expected, the report said.