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Hugh Grant: No one is allowed to question the Mail

The actor Hugh Grant has refused to withdraw his suggestion to the Leveson Inquiry into press standards that Associated Newspapers obtained information about him through phone hacking.

The company's editor-in-chief, Paul Dacre, has denied the allegations, describing them as "mendacious smears".

Interviewed by the Today programme's Evan Davis, Mr Grant insisted the papers were not used to having their methods questioned:

"I can see why they're cross because for once, someone has had the courage to question their probity and their honesty and, generally speaking, if anyone does that with a paper like the Daily Mail, however much they may go on about freedom of speech, no one is allowed the freedom of speech to question the Daily Mail.

"If you do, you will be trashed and that's what's happened again and again and again to me and to anyone else who has dared to question the Daily Mail. "

The actor added that his case was the "lowest priority", adding that he was much more interested in the corruption of the police and the "cowardice" of parliamentarians unable to speak out against the press.

And he conceded that he was not a "good church-going" person. "I'm the guy caught with a hooker," he said.

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