London: Glenn Muclaire, who allegedly intercepted voicemail messages on behalf of the now closed News of the World tabloid to access information for use in sensational stories, was on Wednesday arrested by Scotland Yard.

He was arrested under Operation Weeting, which is investigating charges of phone-hacking, the issue that earlier this year blew into a major controversy across British press, politics and the police.

As is the practice, Scotland Yard did not name Muclaire, but reports he was being held in custody at a south London police station.

He was known to have kept meticulous records of the individuals whose phone messages he had intercepted, and on whose behalf he had done so.

He has been arrested on suspicion of conspiring to intercept voicemail messages.

The Scotland Yard spokesman said: "On December 7, 2011 officers from Operation Weeting arrested a man in connection with phone hacking and perverting the course of justice.

"At 7am officers arrested the man at an address in London on suspicion of conspiring to intercept voicemail messages, contrary to Section 1 (1) of the Criminal Law Act 1977 and on suspicion of perverting the course of justice contrary to common law.

"The man is currently in custody at a south London police station. It would be inappropriate to discuss any further details at this time".

Mulcaire was jailed for six months in January 2007 after admitting intercepting voicemails on phones belonging to aides of the Royal Family, including messages left by Prince William.
In July, Mulcaire issued a statement through his lawyers apologising to those "hurt and affected" by his actions. He said that having been employed by the News of the World as a private investigator from 2002 he had "acted on the instructions of others".

In November, in an another statement issued by his lawyer, Mulcaire said he did not delete messages on a mobile phone belonging to the murdered schoolgirl, Milly Dowler and "had no reason to do so".

The scandal has already led to the closure of the News of the World after 168 years, prompted a major public inquiry and forced the resignation of senior police officers.