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  1. Media Law
March 18, 2014

Daily Star and Express pay damages to Paul Gascoigne for privacy breach

By PA Media Lawyer

Former footballer Paul Gascoigne has accepted damages from the Daily Express and Daily Star newspapers to settle his defamation and privacy claim against the two newspapers after they put video footage showing him in a drunken and incoherent state on their websites.
They also ran stories making allegations about his private life and discussing his finances. Gascoigne had been seeking damages of up to £25,000.
The footage – which Gascoigne did not know was being made – was shot by a man called Shane Abbott in the former player's flat near Hastings in early February last year.
At the time Gascoigne was suffering serious problems because of a relapse into alcoholism.
Abbott also sold the newspapers details of Gascoigne's finances and his personal life.
The case was settled, with the newspapers agreeing to pay damages and Gascoigne's legal costs. The claim had been scheduled to go to trial in July.
Gascoigne's legal team had said in papers filed with the court that he had suffered a relapse in the months prior to February 2013 and needed extra treatment for alcoholism.
During this time "his life became chaotic and he mixed with drug addicts and alcoholics who would on occasion exploit him for asking him for money," it was said.
"They would often use his home. He was also prey to people with neither affliction but who simply wanted to exploit him. One such person was Shane Abbott."
Gascoigne's legal team denied that the former Tottenham Hotspur player was ever Abbott's friend or flatmate.

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