Belfast Telegraph

Prince William demanding 'significant damages' for wife Catherine's 2012 topless photo scandal

The royals were horrified by the invasion of privacy.

Prince William is seeking more than $1.5 million (£1.16 million) in damages from those responsible for snapping and publishing "shocking" topless photos of his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge in 2012.

The candid images of the sunbathing princess caused an international outcry when they were printed in France's Closer magazine, while other pictures of Catherine in her bikini appeared in newspaper La Provence.

The British royals immediately launched criminal proceedings under the country's strict privacy laws, taking legal action against six members of the media, including Closer's editor Laurence Pieau and the photographers who used long lenses to spy on the couple during its vacation at the secluded and private Chateau d' Autet estate in Provence, France.

The case has gone to trial, and during a hearing on Monday (01May17), the royals' lawyer, Jean Veil, read out a statement from the Prince, who slammed the huge invasion of privacy.

"We know France and the French and we know that they are, in principle, respectful of private life, including that of their guests," began the statement. "The clandestine way in which these photographs were taken was particularly shocking to us as it breached our privacy."

He went on to claim the incident "reminded us of the harassment that led to the death of my mother, Diana Princess of Wales", who was killed in a car crash in Paris in 1997, when her vehicle was chased by members of the paparazzi.

Prince William and the Duchess are calling for "very large damages", reportedly to the tune of 1.5 million Euros ($1.6 million/£1.2 million) from Closer bosses alone, as well as a "very significant fine" as punishment for the suspects, according to The Telegraph.

A verdict is expected to be delivered on 4 July (17).

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