Messages on Boris Johnson’s phone have been recovered by technical experts

WhatsApp messages sent and received by the former prime minister before May 2021 should have been at the official inquiry last week to comply with a Supreme Court ruling.

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However, the device, which was in Mr Johnson’s possession, could not be accessed.

He was told not to use that phone again during his tenure after the Popbitch gossip newsletter revealed the number had been freely available on the internet for around 15 years.

Mr Johnson’s spokesman said he was advised after the discovery to keep his old phone switched off for safety reasons.

However, when he was given permission to turn it back on, he reportedly couldn’t remember his passcode.

Mr Johnson’s spokesman said he was “pleased that technical experts have now managed to recover all relevant messages from the device”.

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“As has been stated on numerous occasions, he will now turn this material over to the investigation in an unredacted form,” he added in a statement.

“The investigative process requires that the Cabinet Office now conduct a security review of this material. The timing of any further progress in submitting the inquiry is therefore under the control of the Cabinet Office.

“It has always been the case that Boris Johnson passed this material on to the inquiry and did everything he could to help with its recovery. A meticulous, investigation-approved process was followed to ensure this was successful.”

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