04th Sep 2020
The Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle and her son Archie are suing a paparazzi agency over pictures of them taken in a park on Vancouver Island
The Duchess of Sussex is suing a paparazzi agency over photographs taken in January of her and her son Archie, using a ruling won by JK Rowling which protects the privacy of celebrities’ children.
Photographs taken of Meghan and Archie in a baby carrier walking with two dogs on Vancouver Island following the announcement that the duke and duchess would step down as royals were “private information” that was “misused” says the duchess.
The case is being brought in the names of Meghan and Archie against Splash, a picture agency in LA and London. The UK agency says the photographs were “an important matter of public interest” following the duke and duchess’ decision to step down as senior royals, saying the duchess did not have reasonable expectation of privacy in Horth Hill Regional Park where they were photographed, that Archie’s face was not shown and that no Canadian laws were broken.
According to Jonathan Barnes who is representing the duchess and Archie, Splash claims that Meghan “knew everything that was going on and was a volunteer in the sense that she carried on walking when she knew she was being photographed.” The photographs, which are still on sale, were taken with a long lens and Barnes says that the duchess and her son were “papped… without their acquiescence or consent”.
The duchess and Archie had a “reasonable expectation of privacy” says Barnes, citing JK Rowling’s court ruling in 2008 (over pictures taken of her son) that protects celebrities’ children from being photographed without their parents’ permission, unless their parents have exposed their children to publicity.
Splash have previously paid damages to Prince Harry in 2018 for helicopter photographs taken of his Cotswolds home.
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