Steve Coogan praises ‘brave’ Prince Harry for bringing phone hacking case


Steve Coogan has praised “brave” Prince Harry after a judge found that the royal’s phone was hacked by the Daily Mirror.

The actor, comedian and press campaigner hailed the Duke of Sussex for bringing the High Court case, saying he had shunned an alleged “Faustian pact” between the tabloid press and other members of the Royal Family.

It came after Judge Timothy Fancourt ruled on Friday that phone hacking was “widespread and habitual” at the Mirror from 1998 onwards.

He found that the Duke’s case was “proved in part”, with 15 of the 33 articles presented in court found to be the product of phone hacking or other unlawful information gathering.

In a statement, the royal described the findings as “vindicating and affirming”.

Read more:
The articles at the centre of the hacking trial
What are the main findings of the case?

In an interview with Sky’s Friday Night with Niall Paterson, Coogan praised the ruling, which he said had been “a long time coming”.

He added: “I’m not a royalist but I have great admiration for Prince Harry for not entering into the Faustian pact that the Royal Family has entered into before with the tabloid press.

“He broke that. It was a very bold, brave thing to do and I think there will be repercussions.”

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What does the Prince Harry ruling mean?

The actor also called for reform in the media industry as he described self-regulation of newspapers by the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO), which was founded in 2014 following the Leveson Inquiry, as a “sham” and “window dressing”.

“We want an accountable press,” he added.

Coogan’s comments came after Piers Morgan accused Prince Harry of hypocrisy with his attitude to privacy.

Harry had singled out Mr Morgan in his reaction to today’s ruling, as his mission to take on the tabloid press continues.

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