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Douglas & Others V Hello! Magazine. Ltd.

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Introduction

Law Douglas & Others V Hello! Magazine. Ltd For the first time a Hollywood couple has put a figure on their personal suffering, even though their claim for an invasion of privacy failed in the High Court. Catherine Zeta-Jones and her husband Michael Douglas demanded �100,000 for their hurt feelings when snatched pictures from their wedding appeared in Hello! Magazine. Their demand for �50,000 each is on top of a claim for �500,000 for interference in their commercial rights to pictures of their wedding. Zeta-Jones had told the court: "It's not about the money; it's absolutely not about the money." She added, in a telling aside: "One million pounds is not that much to us." The couple ordered their lawyers to act after a handful of hazy pictures taken by gatecrasher Rupert Thorpe was published in Hello!" The actors had signed a 1 million exclusive deal with rivals OK! for coverage of their wedding at the New York Plaza hotel in November 2000. Zeta-Jones, said she felt "violated" when she found out that Hello! had been first to publish pictures. Her husband, 58, said he felt as if his house had been ransacked and all his belongings thrown into the street. In April Mr. ...read more.

Middle

He told the court of the doctor's "joke": "Quite remarkably, you may think, he was to say to a sergeant who called at the surgery after her death that he considered her such a nuisance he had laughingly considered having part of the seating area permanently reserved for her and mounting a plaque to the effect that the seat was permanently reserved for her." Mrs Lomas had long-standing problems with depression and anxiety and worried about her son Jack, 38, who had a history of psychiatric illness. On the day she died, May 29, 1997, she caught the bus to Shipman's surgery and arrived for a 4pm appointment 25 minutes early where she was met by receptionist Carol Chapman. Mrs. Chapman noted that she seemed "unusually quiet and off color" when she went into the doctor's room shortly before 4pm. Mr Henriques said that some minutes later Shipman emerged "looking tired and flushed". The GP allegedly said in a loud voice: "I'm sorry about the wait. I have just had a problem with the ECG (electro cardiograph heart machine)." Mr Henriques added: "He said nothing further about Ivy Lomas. ...read more.

Conclusion

Mr. Leslie, too, faced problems in bringing any such action: first, the raking over of his private life and further exposure to the allegations. Secondly, he had somewhat weakened his position, one lawyer suggested that, by "hiding behind a cloak of anonymity when giving an interview to the Mirror", which, the lawyer said, "rather puts him on the back foot". Either way, lawyers agreed that Mr. Leslie was unlikely to take any action in the civil courts while there is the prospect of any criminal proceedings. The Crown Prosecution Service said that in such cases it would decide whether it is in the public interest to prosecute, after receiving a file from the police. The police in turn would not investigate without a complaint from Ms Jonsson. However, three alleged "victims" were reported to have made formal complaints to the police, although it was not clear if this was a specific allegation of rape. One newspaper lawyer said: "Mr. Leslie would have to wait for the outcome of any criminal moves. If there was a trial, and he was acquitted, this would give strength to his arm in any libel suit. "And he would not want to go the expense of a libel suit before finding out if he was going to be charged." A prosecution therefore looked less likely than a libel suit. ...read more.

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