Duchess Kate (Catherine) and Prince William scored a major victory against French magazine Closer who were the first to publish the topless photos. ‘Closer’ has reportedly been ordered to turn over all digital copies of the topless, sunbathing photos within 24 hours.
The decision, which called the pictures a “brutal display,” says the French magazine Closer must pay a fine of $13,100 for every day it fails to hand over the pictures, and the magazine can no longer disseminate them.
It is a largely symbolic victory, since pictures that get out in the digital world can really never be removed and since two other publications have published them in Ireland and Italy and the ruling has no effect on them.
“The Duchess would be no different to any other celeb pics we would get in, for example Rihanna or Lady Gaga,” said the Daily Star editor Mike O’Kane. “She’s not the future queen of Ireland so really the only place this is causing fury seems to be in the U.K.”
Alfonso Signorini, editor of Chi, added a “non violation of privacy because they were taken from a public space … the photos are absolutely within the confines of the Italian law.”
But the lawyers for the royal family surely were aware of this, and sought to send a message to future publishers and paparazzi about how they should treat the royal family.
“These snapshots which showed the intimacy of a couple, partially naked on the terrace of a private home, surrounded by a park several hundred meters from a public road, and being able to legitimately assume that they are protected from passers-by, are by nature particularly intrusive,” the French ruling decreed. “(They) were thus subjected to this brutal display the moment the cover appeared.”
St. James Palace, the royal’s spokespersons, said the family would also pursue criminal action against the paparazzi who shot the photos.