Secret Facebook emails by Mark Zuckerberg over data-sharing scandal are seized by UK Parliament’s serjeant-at-arms and could now be released by politicians – despite US court ordering them to remain private

Sunday, November 25, 2018
By Paul Martin

Parliament has seized hold of private documents from the social media giant
Files said to contain decisions made before the Cambridge Analytica Scandal
Damian Collins demanded US software company Six4Three hand in documents

By BHVISHYA PATEL and ALEXANDER ROBERTSON
DAILYMAIL.COM
25 November 2018

Parliament has exerted ‘unprecedented’ powers to seize private documents from Facebook that allegedly reveal its knowledge of the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

The secret cache is believed to include emails between Mark Zuckerberg and other executives that shows the firm knew about flaws in its privacy policy and allowed them to be actively exploited.

MPs discovered the documents were in the possession of an American software executive visiting London on a business trip and sent an official from the House of Commons to his hotel to retrieve them.

He was given two hours to hand them over to an appointee of Kamal El-Hajji, the House of Common’s serjeant-at-arms, who is responsible for the security of the parliamentary estate.

However the executive refused, and was then hauled to Parliament and warned he could face imprisonment if he did not comply.

Damian Collins, chairman of the Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Committee, told the BBC: ‘We felt this [information] was highly relevant to the inquiry… and therefore we sent an order to Mr [Ted] Kramer through the serjeant at arms asking that these documents be supplied to us. Ultimately, that order was complied with.’

Mr Collins said he had read over the documents and his committee would decide this week what it intends to do with them.

It comes as MPs attempt to hold Zuckerberg and his firm to account over data breaches that affected more than 87 million Facebook users.

The documents were taken from Ted Kramer, founder of the US company Six4Three, which is currently fighting its own lawsuit with Facebook.

A US judge in California had ordered the files, obtained from Facebook via a legal discovery process, could not be revealed to the public earlier this year.

However, MPs from the culture committee, headed by MP Damian Collins, drew up an ‘unprecedented’ order after discovering that Mr Kramer was due to visit the UK.

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