In a recent legal skirmish against the British tabloid giant, the Mirror Group, Prince Harry emerged victorious with a partial win. The court, in a decisive move, granted the royal a substantial sum of $180,000 (£140,000) as damages in his intricate phone-hacking case.
Accusations from Prince Harry pointed fingers at the Mirror Group tabloids, accusing them of intrusive phone hacking and engaging in illicit activities to extract private information for sensational news pieces. His claim painted a picture of victimhood, citing over 140 instances of unlawful news gathering.
This landmark ruling, unveiled on Friday, December 15, holds significant implications for the landscape of British media. Notably, Prince Harry, breaking a 130-year tradition, stepped into the witness box during the dramatic seven-week trial.
In a compelling testimony, he unveiled a narrative of his personal life, relationships, and family being exploited for news stories, all stemming from information obtained through illegal means. The culprits in question were identified as the Daily Mirror, the Sunday Mirror, and People, responsible for publishing these infringing stories between 1995 and 2011.
The financial compensation awarded, totaling a sum just surpassing half of the sought £320,000, reflects the gravity of the offenses committed against Prince Harry. Throughout the trial, the examination focused on 33 specific stories, revealing that 15 of them were products of either phone hacking or other unlawful methods of information gathering.
Interestingly, this development follows closely on the heels of another court decision. In a separate case, Prince Harry was mandated to pay over £48,000 ($61,000) in legal costs to the Mail on Sunday. This payment came in the aftermath of his unsuccessful attempt to dismiss part of the paper’s defense in a libel case.
The trial not only underscored the shadowy tactics employed by British tabloids but also shed light on the involvement of former Mirror editor Piers Morgan in widespread phone hacking.
Prince Harry finds himself entangled in additional legal battles, including one against Rupert Murdoch’s News Group Newspapers (NGN), the publisher of The Sun and the now-defunct News of the World tabloids.
Another ongoing case involves Associated Newspapers, with the renowned singer Elton John among the accusers. The saga continues as the royal confronts these media giants in pursuit of justice.
Prince Harry’s case, download full statement from the Britain High Court ruling Here.