French magazine must pay 190,000 euros over Kate topless snaps

French magazine must pay 190,000 euros over Kate topless snaps


A French court ruled Tuesday that a French celebrity magazine must pay 100,000 euros in damages to Britain’s Prince William and his wife Kate over topless photos of the duchess published in 2012.

The court also ordered Closer magazine’s editor Laurence Pieau and publisher Ernesto Mauri to each pay 45,000 euros ($53,000) in fines, the maximum possible.

The couple had sought 1.5 million euros in damages and interest.

Closer magazine’s lawyer Paul-Albert Iweins said he was “pleased” with the ruling on the damages to pay, but said the fine was “exaggerated for a simple private matter.”

For his part, the royal couple’s lawyer Jean Veil declined to comment, adding that Kensington Palace would make a statement.

Two Paris-based agency photographers, Cyril Moreau, 32, and Dominique Jacovides, 59, were each given fines of 10,000 euros, with 5,000 euros suspended.

The grainy snaps of Kate Middleton sunbathing in a bikini bottom were taken while she was on holiday in September 2012 in the south of France with her husband, the second in line to the British throne.

The couple were snapped with a long lens relaxing by a pool at a chateau belonging to Viscount Linley, a nephew of Queen Elizabeth.

The pictures triggered a furious reaction from the royal family in Britain, where several newspapers rejected an offer to buy the pictures.

Closer, a glossy gossip magazine, was the first to splash them on its cover, and they were later reproduced in several other European publications, including Chi in Italy and Ireland’s Daily Star.

The royals — who announced Monday they are expecting a third child — filed a criminal complaint for invasion of privacy and obtained an injunction preventing further use of the images.

The court also ordered Closer to hand over the files with the images to the royal couple.

In a letter read out in court in May, William said the case reminded him of the paparazzi hounding of his mother, princess Diana, who was killed in a car crash in Paris 20 years ago.

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