LONDON, United Kingdom – Actor Jude Law has received a $200,000 payout over phone hacking by the now-defunct British tabloid News of the World, one of a series of settlements read out at the High Court in London today.
Law is among 36 phone hacking victims involved in Thursday's settlements totalling hundreds of thousands of dollars with Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, the New York Times reported.
Other payouts went to soccer player, Ashley Cole, former deputy prime minister Lord Prescott, who received $60,000, and Guy Pelly, a friend of Princes William and Harry.
The court was told Law’s phone was repeatedly hacked between 2003 and 2006, according to the BBC. The British actor’s ex-wife Sadie Frost – one of 18 victims revealed today to have received payouts from media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s News International, the former owner of the News of the World – got $77,000.
In a statement, Frost said she suspected Law was tipping off journalists because reporters always seemed to anticipate her movements.
Sara Payne, the mother of murdered schoolgirl Sarah Payne, and Shaun Russell, whose wife and daughter were murdered a decade and a half ago, were also awarded undisclosed amounts, the court was told.
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Regarding the damages awarded to Law, the High Court described the, “sustained campaign of surveillance, pursuit and harassment” of the actor, in addition to the publication of private and intrusive information, as “profound”, the Independent reported.
Sixteen articles in total were published revealing personal information about Law. His personal assistant, Ben Jackon, and public relations consultant, Ciara Parkes, were each awarded $60,000 and $55,000, respectively.
In a statement read out in court by his solicitor, Law said that “no aspect of my private life was safe from intrusion by [News International subsidiary] News Group newspapers, including the lives of my children and the people who work for me,” the Guardian reported.
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UPDATE: Mark Lewis, a lawyer for many of the phone-hacking victims said “it is important that we don’t get carried away into thinking that the war is over,” according to the Associated Press. “ There are many more cases in the pipeline.”