Meghan Markle wins privacy case against British tabloid
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A British judge on Thursday ruled that a British tabloid invaded the privacy of Meghan MarkleMeghan MarkleUK government pressured to ease COVID-19 funeral restrictions after photo of queen sitting alone goes viral Prince Harry, William leave their grandfather's funeral together Queen draws attention after seated alone at Prince Philip's funeral due to COVID-19 restrictions MORE, the Duchess of Sussex, by printing portions of a letter she wrote to her father. 

The Associated Press reported that High Court judge Mark Warby decided in his ruling that publisher Associated Newspapers improperly used the duchess’s private information and infringed on her copyright. 

Markle and her husband, Prince HarryPrince HarryUK government pressured to ease COVID-19 funeral restrictions after photo of queen sitting alone goes viral Prince Harry, William leave their grandfather's funeral together Queen draws attention after seated alone at Prince Philip's funeral due to COVID-19 restrictions MORE, had sued the publisher following five February 2019 articles posted in The Mail on Sunday and The MailOnline website, which included large portions of a letter sent to Markle’s estranged father, Thomas Markle, in August 2018. 

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Warby in his ruling said Markle “had a reasonable expectation that the contents of the letter would remain private. The Mail articles interfered with that reasonable expectation,” according to the AP. 

Markle in a statement responding to the ruling said, “After two long years of pursuing litigation, I am grateful to the courts for holding Associated Newspapers and The Mail on Sunday to account for their illegal and dehumanizing practices,” according to Reuters

She went on to say, “For these outlets, it’s a game. For me and so many others, it’s real life, real relationships, and very real sadness. The damage they have done and continue to do runs deep.” 

The AP reported that Associated Newspapers said in a statement it was “very surprised by today’s summary judgment and disappointed at being denied the chance to have all the evidence heard and tested in open court at a full trial.”

“We are carefully considering the judgment’s contents and will decide in due course whether to lodge an appeal,” the publishing company added. 

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A trial date had been set for the fall after it was delayed from its initial January 2021 start date, with Warby at the time saying the reason for the delay would remain confidential. 

However, the judge granted a summary judgment request last month from Markle’s lawyers, arguing the public disclosures of large portions of the private letter “were manifestly excessive and hence unlawful.”

“There is no prospect that a different judgment would be reached after a trial,” Warby added, according to the AP.