Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 23 August 2014

Katie Price privacy case go-ahead

Katie Price's privacy case against a former friend and confidante can proceed, the High Court has ruled

Katie Price's privacy case against a former friend and confidante can proceed, the High Court has ruled.

The TV personality has brought an action against former manager Claire Powell, CAN Associates Ltd, ex-husband Peter Andre and Jamelah Asmar, who met Price when they were both young models.

Ms Asmelah became estranged from Price following her divorce from Andre, but has remained on friendly terms with the singer, who is the father of Price's two younger children.

She asked Mr Justice Tugendhat to strike out the claim against her as an abuse of process on the basis that Price had herself published so much material and information about her own private life that any expectation of privacy she had was overridden.

But the judge dismissed her application to halt the proceedings, which he described as a "lamentable renewal" of the civil litigation between Price and Andre and a feature of their relationship since their May 2009 divorce.

Price's complaint concerned disclosures in an affidavit, sworn by Ms Asmelah in September 2009, about Price's relationship with a man, Mr A, and Price's revelation of the identity of another man, Mr B, who allegedly raped her some years ago.

In her action, Price claimed that, in October 2009, Ms Powell, with Ms Asmelah's knowledge and approval, offered the information in the affidavit to the News of the World. Ms Asmelah admitted meeting a journalist with a view to a possible article about Price and talking about her and Mr A, but said she had no recollection of discussing Mr B.

The judge said that anyone who had read the volume of information of a highly personal nature disclosed to the public at large apparently by Price herself - including photos of her in OK! magazine with Mr A - might be inclined to conclude that she was "not a person whose feelings are at all sensitive when it comes to interference with her privacy".

But, he added, it would be wrong for the court to form a view about it on the papers as things stood - although a very different picture might emerge if the case did go to trial.

Price's lawyers had argued that her evidence of being "tremendously hurt and upset" could not be dismissed summarily. She claimed that Ms Asmelah was a trusted confidante who had acted in gross breach of trust, and substantial damages would be appropriate to mark her conduct in attempting to sell her confidences to the media.

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