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Inside Prince Harry and Meghan’s New Paparazzi Lawsuit: “He Will Do Everything In His Power to Protect His Family”
Vanityfair.com reports: “They have already taken action against the “invasive” British tabloids, now Prince Harry and Meghan are suing a US-based paparazzo who has been shopping illegal pictures of their son Archie, taken on the grounds of their rented Beverly Hills home.”
In a new lawsuit filed on Thursday the Sussexes say that the paparazzo, who is currently unidentified, “crossed a red line” by taking pictures of baby Archie. They are taking legal action to protect their 14-month-old son after “the relentless and quite frankly shocking efforts of the tabloid media to profit from serial intrusions” on Archie. In filing the lawsuit against several John Does, Harry and Meghan aim to “uncover the identity of those who took the photographs and those who are seeking to profit by selling them. They also seek to put any prospective purchasers of the photos on notice that they were taken illegally and are not what they purport to be.”
While the family has the services of a fully trained team of protection officers (who come as part of their rental agreement with Tyler Perry, whose house they are renting), they claim they have been constantly followed by the paparazzi and that helicopters and drones are regularly flown over the estate, where holes have been cut in the security fence they installed after their arrival.
Prince Harry, who grew up in the media spotlight, is said to be particularly upset about the level of harassment he and his family are being subjected to on a daily basis and refuses to allow his wife and son to be “fodder” for the tabloid press, who he blames for the death of his mother, the late Princess of Wales. Last year he spoke about how he feared Meghan was “falling victim to the same powerful forces” as Princess Diana.
According to legal documents filed at the Superior Court of the State of California and seen by Vanity Fair, the Sussexes, who have been staying at Perry’s $18 million mansions in Beverly Ridge since March, claim they have been subjected to daily harassment after the location of their home was revealed in the tabloid media.
According to the documents filed, “Some paparazzi and media outlets have flown drones a mere 20 feet above the house, as often as three times a day, to obtain photographs of the couple and their young son in their private residence (some of which have been sold and published). Others have flown helicopters above the backyard of the residence, as early as 5:30 a.m. and as late as 7:00 p.m., waking neighbors and their son, day after day. And still, others have even cut holes in the security fence itself to peer through it.”
In their lawsuit, the Sussexes say they took considerable measures to prevent paparazzi from photographing them, including the erection of a large mesh fence around the property to guard against telephoto lenses. However, despite the security measures the family continues to be a target with tabloid newspapers and magazines desperate for new pictures of baby Archie.
The couple’s lawyer Michael Kump said, “Every individual and family member in California is guaranteed by law the right to privacy in their home. No drones, helicopters, or telephoto lenses can take away that right.”
One of the reasons the couple moved to the States was to escape the scrutiny of the invasive British tabloids, but the US paparazzi are governed by different laws. When they lived in England the British press agreed not to publish paparazzi images of the family. But in Hollywood, they face new challenges, according to Meghan’s biographer Andrew Morton.