Prince Harry to get his day in court against Daily Mail

Prince Harry, Elton John and other celebs will go to trial against the Daily Mail.

Prince Harry, Elton John and other celebs will go to trial against the Daily Mail. Photo: Getty

Prince Harry, Elton John and five other high-profile British figures will have their day in court after a milestone ruling in their legal battle against a UK publisher.

The High Court in London ruled on Friday (local time) that their lawsuit can go to trial against the publisher of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline.

Harry and his co-claimants, who also include actors Liz Hurley and Sadie Frost, allege widespread unlawful behaviour such as phone hacking and other invasions of privacy which the publisher slammed as “lurid claims”.

Their sensational allegations date back 30 years.

The High Court ruling paves the way for a lengthy court battle.

In his judgment, Justice Nicklin said the claimants had “a real prospect of demonstrating not only that the unlawful acts themselves were concealed, but also, in many instances, further devices were employed in the published articles to throw the subject ‘off the scent’.

“Several claimants complain that they believed that their confidences were being betrayed by people close to them.”

Publisher Associated Newspapers (ANL) had sought to have the case thrown out, saying the claims were outside a six-year time limit for legal action.

In a statement the company said: “As we have always made unequivocally clear, the lurid claims made by Prince Harry and others of phone-hacking, landline-tapping, burglary and sticky-window microphones are simply preposterous and we look forward to establishing this in court in due course.”

Actor Hugh Grant, a leading campaigner for press reforms, said the ruling was a “significant blow to the Daily Mail and great news for anyone who wants the truth about allegations of illegal press practices to come out”.

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