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Max Mosley wins privacy action against 'News of the World'

By
Max Mosley

© PA Images

The publisher of the News of the World has been ordered by a court in France to pay £32,000 in costs and damages after being found guilty of violating the privacy of former Formula One boss Max Mosley.

A judge in Paris has ordered News Group Newspapers, a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch's News International, to pay a €10,000 (£8,590) fine, along with €7,000 in damages and €15,000 in legal costs.

The case refers to a 2008 article in the News of the World, the Sunday tabloid shut down by News International amid the UK phone hacking scandal, that wrongly claimed Mosley had participated in a Nazi-themed orgy.

However, the court cleared the paper's former chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck of libelling Mosley after saying that he could not be held personally responsible for the 3,000 copies of the paper containing the article that were distributed in France.

Mosley was awarded a £60,000 damages settlement in 2008 from the News of the World after the UK High Court ruled that the paper had invaded his privacy over an expose of his sex life.

However, the former motorsport boss lost a bid at the European Court of Human Rights in May to force newspapers to warn people before running stories on their private lives.

In the front-page article, the News of the World described Mosley as "a sadomasochistic sex pervert" and posted a two-hour video online that had been secretly recorded by one of the participants.

Mosley, whose father Sir Oswald Mosley led the British fascist party in the 1930s, admitted paying five women for sex, but said that the incident was a prison fantasy and was not Nazi-themed.

After today's ruling, Mosley's lawyer Philippe Ouakrat praised the outcome, noting the "extremely high" fine levied against a foreign newspaper by the French court.

"It is a fair decision," he told The Guardian. "It was very important for Mr Mosley to have this decision."

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