Phone hacking: High profile victims react to payouts

The High Court has awarded several high-profile figures tens of thousands of pounds over phone hacking by the now-defunct News of the World. Here, some react for the first time.

Jude Law, actor

Image caption Jude Law was awarded £130,000 ($200,000) by the High Court in London

"Over a number of years, the News of the World conducted an illegal campaign of hacking and surveillance against me," the actor said in a statement.

"In 2011, I decided to bring legal proceedings against them to try to find out the truth.

"Today, in court, it has been announced that those proceedings have been completely successful. I have been unable to make any statement until now about phone hacking because of those proceedings. Now they are at an end, I can finally speak out about what went on.

"For several years leading up to 2006, I was suspicious about how information concerning my private life was coming out in the press.

"I changed my phones, I had my house swept for bugs but still the information kept being published. I started to become distrustful of people close to me.

"I was truly appalled by what I was shown by the police and by what my lawyers have discovered. It is clear that I, along with many others, was kept under constant surveillance for a number of years.


"No aspect of my private life was safe from intrusion by News Group newspapers, including the lives of my children and the people who work for me.

"It was not just that my phone messages were listened to. News Group also paid people to watch me and my house for days at a time and to follow me and those close to me both in this country and abroad.

"I have now achieved everything I wanted from this litigation. The News of the World has finally made admissions about the extent of their illegal activity and they have acknowledged that what they did was wrong.

"They have also finally admitted that what they did to me personally amounted to harassment and that it should never have happened.

"They have accepted that the information published in the News of the World articles and the Sun articles that I complained about was private. I hope this means that they will never invade my privacy again. They have also finally given a proper apology.

"For me this case was never about money. It was about standing up for myself and finding out what had happened. I owed it to my friends and family as well as myself to do this.

"I believe in a free press but what News Group did was an abuse of its freedoms. They have overstepped the mark for many years.

"They were prepared to do anything to sell their newspapers and to make money, irrespective of the impact it had on people's lives.

"It was not just those like me, whose work involved them being in the public eye, but also many other people, often at the most vulnerable times of their lives.

"It is now up to the police and the Leveson Inquiry to continue their investigations into tabloid abuses."

John Prescott, former deputy prime minister

Image caption Lord Prescott was awarded £40,000 ($62,000)

Lord Prescott told his local paper, the Hull Daily Mail: "Today's court decision at long last brings clarity, apology and compensation for the years of hacking into my telephone messages by Rupert Murdoch's News Group Newspapers.

"It follows years of aggressive denials and a cavalier approach to private information and the law.

"These denials were supported by the Press Complaints Commission and the inaction of senior officers of the Metropolitan Police.

"However, I do not wish to make further comment on this whole matter until the result of my judicial review against the Metropolitan Police has been concluded."

Chris Bryant, Labour MP

Image caption Mr Bryant received £30,000 ($46,000) in damages

"In none of these cases is there a hush clause. Nobody is taking money and saying that they're going to keep quiet about what News of the World did," Mr Bryant told the BBC.

"And for me that was really important because the whole point of this legislation, taking these cases, was to break open the fact that the Metropolitan Police point blank refused to re-open their investigation and indeed said in Parliament that my phone had never been hacked and that John Prescott's phone hadn't been hacked.

"But today we know that News International have owned up to the fact that it did.

"So I think the Metropolitan Police have got a lot of questions to answer."