Markle Wins Another Round in Battle Against Tabloid

Duchess say it's time to reshape industry
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 2, 2021 11:53 AM CST
Markle Wins Another Round in Battle Against Tabloid
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry pose for pictures after visiting the observatory in One World Trade in New York, Thursday, Sept. 23, 2021.   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

(Newser) – Meghan Markle has won another round in her yearslong legal battle against the Mail on Sunday—but publisher Associated Newspapers might take the case to Britain's top court before it agrees to pay the duchess damages and print a front-page apology. The Court of Appeal in London ruled in Markle's favor Thursday, deciding that the breach of privacy and copyright case would not have to go to trial following a summary judgment against the publisher earlier this year, People reports. Markle sued after the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline published parts of what she said was a "deeply personal" letter to estranged father Thomas Markle in 2019.

Judge Geoffrey Vos said Thursday that the duchess "had a reasonable expectation of privacy in the contents of the letter," which she sent after she married Prince Harry in 2018. "Those contents were personal, private, and not matters of legitimate public interest," Vos said. Lawyers for Associated Newspapers argued that Markle had shared a draft the letter with then-communications chief Jason Knauf, telling him that she suspected the letter might be leaked and had chosen her words accordingly.

Markle accused the publisher of dragging out the case and said she had faced "deception, intimidation, and calculated attacks," over the last three years. After the ruling, she called for changes to the tabloid industry, the Guardian reports. "While this win is precedent-setting, what matters most is that we are now collectively brave enough to reshape a tabloid industry that conditions people to be cruel, and profits from the lies and pain that they create," she said in a statement. The publisher said it was "disappointed" by the ruling and is considering an appeal.

(Read more Meghan Markle stories.)

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