Yet the legal system of England and Wales seemed to care a great deal.
By contrast, everyone is rightly outraged at a reporter picking up a missing girl's voicemail - not to mention the voicemails of dead soldiers families. It's true that not one in fifty of us ever changes the default voicemail code - is it '0000' or '1111' ? - so it's not exactly a difficult thing to do - but neither is robbing small children or elderly people - and they're pretty disgusting crimes.
Looks like Murdoch is cynically throwing the NOTW staff to the wolves, while keeping on then-editor Rebekah Wade, who should, along with Andy Coulson be carrying the can - all to keep the bid for full control of Sky alive.
I guess it may not be too bad for some of the staff - if they can take the redundancy and then sign on straight away to work for "Sun-day"(© Laban Tall 2011).
The Guardian and BBC are loving it - loving it. I've had to forget about Radios Four and Five on my current three-hours-plus daily commute - because all I hear is Coulson/Cameron/Coulson/Cameron.
But even a stopped clock is right twice a day, and the Guardian and BBC are right for all the wrong reasons. The Dirty Digger may be a great newspaperman. But he's an enemy of Britain who's done great damage to this country's culture (damage, to be fair, only made possible because of the 'creative destruction' of predecessors like BBC boss Hugh Greene) even while his papers have produced some great journalism - including great investigative journalism.
God willing the Sky bid will fail - although I wouldn't put money on it. And ideally a Biblical plague - frogs, boils, blood, whatever - should afflict the UK executives of News International, until all UK operations close and only blue plaques at Wapping and Bouverie Street mark its passing.
Only one cloud no bigger than a man's hand. What if Murdoch's difficulty is Desmond's opportunity?
UPDATE - surely time to impound all the servers and get the IT forensics boys out ?
Police are examining claims that a News International executive may have expunged millions of emails from an archive believed to date back to 2005. The Guardian reported that ‘massive quantities’ of the archive appear to have been deleted on two separate occasions, the most recent in January of this year.
A handy hint for Mr Plod - News International will, like all large organisations dependent on IT, have a DR (disaster recovery) site somewhere - probably run by a third party, usually not directly accessible to most of their IT staff, and where regular backup copies of server data are stored. It may have been overwritten when the copies were refreshed, but one never knows. On the other hand the operative charged with the (at this stage purely theoretical) task may have done a thorough job. But if an executive really did do it, the data may still be recoverable quite easily. There's more to deleting data than hitting 'Delete'.