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05th Sep 2017

Topless pictures of Duchess Kate were ‘an invasion of privacy’ rules Paris court

The verdict was announced on Tuesday afternoon.

Gillian Fitzpatrick

A French court ruled today that celebrity magazine, Closer, should pay €100,000 in damages to British royals William and Kate.

Topless photos of the duchess were printed five years ago: they showed her sunbathing by a pool in her bikini bottoms during a September 2013 holiday with her husband.

The court on Tuesday decreed that those photos were an invasion of the couple’s privacy, although the damages awarded were significantly less than the €1.5million their legal team had originally sought.

Fines of €45,000 each were also given to the editor and director of Closer.

The images were taken with a long lens some distance away from the property where they were staying – a chateau belonging to Viscount Linley, a nephew of Queen Elizabeth II.

The pictures were not published in Britain following a furious response by the royal family there. In Ireland, the Irish Daily Star controversially ran with the snaps – a decision that eventually led to the resignation of its editor, Michael O’Kane.

On Monday, William and Catherine – who married in April 2011 – announced that they were expecting their third child

During the trial and in a letter read out in the west Paris court, the prince said the incident reminded him of paparazzi hounding of his late mother, Diana.

The prosecution had called for “very heavy” fines for the editor of Closer in France and the head of the Mondadori group, which owns the magazine.

However, Closer’s lawyers had counter-argued that the pictures were in the public interest and conveyed a “positive image” of the royals.