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United's Ryan Giggs has started legal proceedings against the News of the World, according to his lawyers.
The development came as News International, parent company of the tabloid and its daily sister paper The Sun, acknowledged former Sun and NOTW editor Rebekah Brooks had been shown documents by police which proved her voicemail had been illegally intercepted.
Law firm Schillings said "proceedings have been issued" by Giggs against the Sunday paper, but would not comment further.
News International declined to comment on the action being taken by the Manchester United player, but a spokeswoman said: "News International can confirm that Rebekah Brooks was recently shown documents by the police that proved she was a victim of illegal voicemail interception."
Three News of the World journalists have been arrested since the Metropolitan Police reopened its inquiry into claims that staff hacked into the answerphone messages of celebrities and politicians.
The Met would not comment on the cases of either Giggs or Brooks but News International later confirmed it was "aware of the claim" in relation to the footballer.