Actor Jude Law has settled his lawsuit against Rupert Murdoch’s News International over illegal phone hacking allegations.
The star of “Sherlock Holmes” and “The Holiday” is one of 19 people to receive payouts today after being hacked by staff at the now-defunct News of the World tabloid newspaper. In the deal announced in court, Law received $200,000 plus attorneys fees. His ex-wife Sadie Frost settled for $77,000.
Law was not in court for the proceedings, but a statement by the actor was read in front of a courtroom packed with journalists and lawyers. In it, Law said his phone was hacked repeatedly between 2003 and 2006, including while he was in the U.S., at JFK airport in New York.
“No aspect of my private life was safe from News of the World,” he said. Frost told him she didn’t trust him because paparazzi always knew where she would be.
The court heard statements from 18 victims of hacking. Only one victim, British politician Chris Bryant, appeared in court. After each statement, News International lawyers admitted the company’s guilt, apologized and announced monetary damages.
News International is not commenting on the settlements. Legal experts say the company is effectively “waving the white flag” and has no interest in putting the paper’s former reporters and editors on the stand.
Of the more than 60 lawsuits filed against the company so far, at least 10 still have not been settled and are scheduled for trial Feb. 13. The “Voice Of An Angel” singer Charlotte Church is among the cases still set for trial. She claims the British tabloids ruined her career, relentlessly pursuing her and hacking her phone when she was a teenager.