Mail on Sunday lost appeal in privacy battle over letter to her father.
‘This is a victory not just for me, but for anyone who has ever felt scared to stand up for what’s right,’ wrote the Duchess of Sussex in statement acknowledging the win.
The publisher of the Mail on Sunday lost a legal battle to overturn a High Court ruling that it breached the privacy of Meghan Markle by publishing parts of a letter she wrote to her father.
The Duchess of Sussex,sued Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL) over five articles that reproduced parts of a personal and private letter sent to her father in August 2018.
The High Court ruled earlier in 2021 that ANL’s publication of the letter was unlawful, entering summary judgment for Meghan and avoiding the need for a trial.
ANL brought an appeal against that decision during a three-day hearing in November 2021, but it was dismissed by three senior judges .
Reading a summary of their decision at the Court of Appeal, Sir Geoffrey Vos, Master of Rolls, said: “It was hard to see what evidence could have been adduced at trial that would have altered the situation.
“The judge had been in as good a position as any trial judge to look at the article in People magazine, the letter and the Mail on Sunday articles to decide if publication of the contents of the Letter was appropriate to rebut the allegations made against Mr Markle.
“The judge had correctly decided that, whilst it might have been proportionate to publish a very small part of the letter for that purpose, it was not necessary to publish half the contents of the letter as Associated Newspapers had done.”
In a statement after the ruling, Meghan Markle, The Duchess of Sussex said: “This is a victory not just for me, but for anyone who has ever felt scared to stand up for what’s right.
“While this win is precedent setting, what matters most is that we are now collectively brave enough to reshape a tabloid industry that conditions people to be cruel and profits from the lies and pain that they create.
“From day one, I have treated this lawsuit as an important measure of right versus wrong. The defendant has treated it as a game with no rules.
“The longer they dragged it out, the more they could twist facts and manipulate the public (even during the appeal itself), making a straightforward case extraordinarily convoluted in order to generate more headlines and sell more newspapers – a model that rewards chaos above truth.
“In the nearly three years since this began, I have been patient in the face of deception, intimidation and calculated attacks.
“Today, the courts ruled in my favour – again – cementing that The Mail on Sunday, owned by Lord Jonathan Rothermere, has broken the law.”