Picture 7 The Director of Public Prosecutions has just announced that Damian Green will not be prosecuted for aiding and abetting misconduct in public office.

The DPP said that the information handled was not secret, did not relate to national security, military or policing matters and that it was not highly confidential. He even added that some of the information leaked touched on "legitimate matters of public interest".

The Telegraph has published the DPP's decision in full.

Great news for democracy and a tremendous relief to Damian and his family.

He had been going about his work as an Opposition politician and benefited from leaks inside the Home Office to highlight facts which were embarrassing for the Government – something which Gordon Brown did himself when he was in Opposition.

But why did it take so long for the CPS to reach this conclusion?

More reaction will follow as soon as I have it!

11.40pm update:

Damian Green has just made the following brief statement on College Green:

"I welcome the decision by the Director of Public Prosecutions, and I want to thank the thousands of people who have contacted me with support.  A large part of my job as Conservative Immigration spokesman is to expose Government failings in immigration policy. That is precisely what I was doing, and that is why Ministers were so embarrassed.

"This led to the first arrest of an opposition politician for doing his job since Britain became a democracy. I cannot think of a better symbol of an out of touch, authoritarian, failing Government which has been in power much too long."

12.15pm update:

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith insisted that the Home Office has a priority to "maintain the protection of some of the most sensitive information in government" and that it was its responsibility to have the leaks investigated in order to protect such information. She concluded:

"It would have been irresponsible not to have taken action." 

The BBC is reporting at 12.45pm that Jacqui Smith is announcing a new review into the Green affair – more will follow laterThis is in fact a reference to the promise made by Mrs Smith in January to review the Home Office's handling of the affair as soon as any legal proceedings were over, which obviously they now are.

Jonathan Isaby

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