Rebekah Brooks, former chief executive of Rupert Mudoch’s media group News International, and Andy Coulson, ex-communications chief of Prime Minister David Cameron, on Friday lost a bid to block their prosecution on charges relating to News of the World phone-hacking scandal. They had challenged their prosecution on the ground that accessing voicemails through hacking after they had been listened to did not constitute an offence.

The judges, however, dismissed th appeal paving the way for their trial to go ahead in September. “Contrary to the legal submission on behalf of the appellants, the resulting situation is not lacking in legal certainty,” they ruled. They also refused to allow them to appeal to the Supreme Court.