The Mail Online has been accused of featuring “plainly voyeuristic” photographs of singer Paul Weller’s children.
Six photographs, featured under the headline “A family day out … Paul Weller takes wife Hannah and his twin sons out for a spot of shopping in the hot LA sun”, have been complained about by the Wellers.
Through law firm Clintons, the family are seeking unlimited damages, compensation and an injunction barring further use of the photographs.
The photographs, showing Dylan, John-Paul and Bowie Weller “enjoying private time with their father”, have now been removed from the website along with the article. It was originally published on the website on 21 October last year.
A High Court claim form said the website had been guilty of a breach of confidence, an unjustified infringement of privacy and a misuse of private information.
While it acknowledges that Weller is a professional musician, it claims that “he is not a public figure in any sense” and that “he has sought to avoid publicity in the media for his young family”.
It claims that Weller was not at first aware of the photographs being taken and that when he found out he objected.
The claim form says: “The fact that some of them were taken without [Weller’s] knowledge, and by use of a long-lens camera, is also evident from the pictures themselves.”
It says: "The photographs are plainly voyeuristic, seeking to intrude upon the claimants' private lives, and in particular cherished moments which they are sharing with their father and each other, and which are an integral part of their development."
Weller objected to the fact that, once published, the photographs left his children “readily identifiable”.
Press Gazette understands Mail Online publisher Associated Newspapers is contesting the claim.