Washington Examiner

Hugh Grant’s hacking lawsuit against the Sun can proceed, says judge.

Actor Hugh Grant’s Lawsuit Against The Sun to Proceed

A judge in the U.K. ruled Friday to allow actor Hugh Grant’s lawsuit against the newspaper The Sun to proceed.

Justice Timothy Fancourt is putting the matter of unlawful information gathering to a trial. While Grant also tried to sue for his phone allegedly being hacked by the News Group Newspapers outlet, the judge threw out all allegations relating to a hack. Grant previously settled with the media group, owned by Rupert Murdoch, and donated cash from the settlement, as well as an additional payment, to media reform group Hacked Off, which campaigns for stricter oversight of Britain’s scandal-ridden press.

Instead, the trial will center on accusations of phone tapping, car bugging, and breaking and entering. Lawyers representing Grant will have to make a case that information gathered led to articles that were written out of the “misuse of private information.”

“If true — which will be a matter for the trial due to take place in January 2024 — these allegations would establish very serious, deliberate wrongdoing at NGN, conducted on an institutional basis on a huge scale,” Fancourt wrote in his ruling. “Of particular relevance … they would also establish a concerted effort to conceal the wrongdoing by hiding and destroying relevant documentary evidence, repeated public denials, lies to regulators and authorities, and unwarranted threats to those who dared to make allegations or notify intended claims against The Sun.”

Grant hired private investigator Gavin Burrows in 2021, who ultimately made the discoveries that led to the lawsuit. Burrows determined that a 2011 break-in to Grant’s fourth-floor apartment was allegedly committed by someone with the paper. Nothing was missing as a result of the intrusion, but now Grant is claiming private information was gleaned as a result.

Similar Lawsuits

Murdoch’s U.K.-based media company is also facing a similar lawsuit from Prince Harry. It has previously won a defamation lawsuit against actor Johnny Depp.

NGN Denies Allegations

“NGN strongly denies the various historical allegations of unlawful information-gathering contained in what remains of Mr. Grant’s claim,” a Friday statement from the conglomerate read.

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