French court decision on topless photos due Tuesday

Mon Sep 17, 2012 5:46pm EDT
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PARIS/DUBLIN (Reuters) - A French court will rule on Tuesday whether to grant an injunction sought by Britain's Prince William and his wife Kate against magazine Closer to prevent further publication of topless photos of her.

In a case that has rocked Britain and reawakened debate on privacy laws, lawyers for the royal couple, titled the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, are seeking damages from Closer and have filed a separate complaint against a photographer that could lead to a criminal case.

The couple have sought an injunction to stop Closer from selling its photographs to any other media, including on the Internet, after the Irish Daily Star reprinted the photographs in its Saturday edition.

The publisher of the Dublin tabloid said on Monday evening it had suspended its editor over the newspaper's decision to publish pages from Closer with the photographs.

The British press have agreed informally not to publish the pictures, which show the former Kate Middleton slipping off her bikini top, relaxing topless on a sun lounger and pulling down her bikini bottoms as her husband applies lotion.

William's office branded the photos a "grotesque and totally unjustified" invasion of their privacy.

An official at the court in Nanterre, near Paris, said the decision would be handed down on Tuesday.

Copies of Closer's Friday edition flew off the shelves in France, snapped up by collectors, British tourists and curious French readers as controversy over the photos raged.

Newspaper vendor Jeremy Alluard said his 30 copies of the magazine had sold out in an hour and a half.   Continued...

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge walks at the Kranji Commonwealth War Cemetery, to pay her respects to the war dead, in Singapore September 13, 2012. REUTERS/Nicolas Asfouri/Pool