WaPo Publisher Allegedly Advised Boris Johnson and Officials to Destroy Evidence

(TargetDailyNews.com) – The Washington Post newsroom must feel more like the set of a soap opera with all the editorial scandals swirling. Just recently, the paper published a report stinging its own incoming editor, Robert Winnett, for allegedly using unethical journalistic practices to get information and for allegedly cooperating with a self-described data “thief.”

Now the paper’s publisher, Will Lewis, is being accused of prodding British government officials to illegally destroy evidence of communications that may have exposed the government’s hypocrisy about its own lockdown rules during the pandemic. Lewis, accusers claim, advised then-UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and others to “clean up” the data on their phones and devices between the last month of 2021 and January 2022.

At the time, British government officials were worried about getting caught for violating their own lockdown rules during what has come to be known as “Partygate.” An investigation found that many civil servants, including Johnson and then-Chancellor Rishi Sunak (now prime minister), did indeed break their own rules.

If the new allegations about the Post’s Will Lewis advising the UK government to cover their tracks are true, it contrasts starkly with the government’s official public position. For example, staff who work at 10 Downing Street (equivalent to the U.S. White House) got an email reminding them to preserve any communications connected to the investigation of government rule-breaking during the pandemic. This is standard practice in government investigations. In private lawsuits, destroying evidence is a legal offense.

The sources making allegations have not been identified. They claim that they took the advice from Lewis to mean that they should delete or obscure photos and text messages that could get anyone in government into trouble with investigators. Some sources said Lewis himself personally advised this data destruction.

As with incoming Post editor Winnett, publisher Lewis’ future with the storied Washington newspaper looks less certain. He’s only been in the role since November of 2023, and already the Post and other U.S media have written stories critical of his journalistic practices and commitment to honest reporting.

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