Steve McFadden, Natasha Kaplinsky and Les Dennis among 29 Mirror phone-hacking payouts - Press Gazette

Steve McFadden, Natasha Kaplinsky and Les Dennis among 29 Mirror phone-hacking payouts

Actor Steve McFadden, TV presenter Natasha Kaplinsky and comedian Les Dennis are among a number of well-known names who have settled their phone hacking damages claims.

They were in a list of 29 people whose legal actions against Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) were brought to an end at London’s High Court on Thursday.

In all except one case – that of actress Jayne Walton, who received £40,000 damages and her legal costs – the details of the agreements were not made public at the hearing before Mr Justice Mann.

In each instance, solicitor Kim Waite offered MGN’s apologies for the damage and distress caused.

The list included former real estate agency director Sandy Armstrong, singer-songwriter Samuel Preston and his ex-fiancee Camille Aznar, Lord Archer’s son, James Archer, Archer family friend Broosk Saib and David Beckham’s father Ted.

Others were TV personality Calum Best, the son of footballer George Best, TV presenter Jeff Brazier, footballer Sol Campbell, Simon Clegg, former chief executive of the British Olympic Association, Big Brother contestant Victor Ebuwa, James Gardner, the friend of footballer Paul Gascoigne, retired boxer Audley Harrison, model Lady Victoria Hervey and George Best’s agent Philip Hughes.

The group also included singer Charlotte Church’s ex-boyfriend Steven Johnson, his father – also called Steven Johnson – and his mother Yvonne Kearle.

Others were actor Neil Morrissey’s partner Emma Killick, actor William Mellor, actresses Sarah Parish and Abigail Titmuss, musician Lee Ryan, Barry Smith, ex-boyfriend of actress Sadie Frost, and sports injuries doctor Mark Waller.


The judge heard that McFadden was caused significant distress by a series of articles which appeared between 1998 and 2009 and were the result of his voicemail messages being hacked.

Articles were published about Kaplinsky between 2003 and 2009 “with at times serious and devastating effect”, said counsel David Sherborne.

She believed that MGN unlawfully discovered distressing medical problems she was experiencing and also ruined happy moments like her wedding and honeymoon.

She was “heartbroken” by photos taken without her knowledge and consent and was left with a “deep sense of violation”.

“Ms Kaplinsky had turned down offers of over a quarter of a million pounds to sell her wedding and honeymoon so that she could enjoy these private moments with her new husband. Instead,that privacy and enjoyment was destroyed by MGN’s unlawful actions and the articles it published as a result.”

Les Dennis, who brought the claim under his real name of Leslie Heseltine, was targeted over an extended period and was “shocked and appalled” at the private information obtained about him, said counsel.

The publication of certain stories by MGN was extremely damaging and distressing for Ted Beckham and caused arguments between him and his family members, the court heard.

“Mr Beckham was also accused of leaking stories himself and this strained his otherwise close relationship with David Beckham and created tensions and distrust amongst close family and friends”, said solicitor Gerald Shamash.



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Author: Dominic Ponsford

Dominic Ponsford is the editor of Press Gazette


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