Privacy order keeps 'well-known person' anonymous

A well-know public figure has been granted an injunction preventing his identification by the High Court.

The man, referred to as XJA, was granted an injunction protecting his privacy by Mrs Justice Sharp, who ruled that identifying him would be an ‘unjustifiable interference with his private and family life”.

XJA – who was referred to in the judgement as a ‘well-known person” – applied for an interim injunction after being told by News Group Newspapers, publisher of The Sun and the News of the World, it intended to publish information about him.

The interim injunction was issued by Mr Justice Calvert Smith ahead of Justice Sharp making her declaration on Friday.

Between the two hearings James Price QC, for XJA, told the court that the central information on which the case was based was false.

Justice Sharp said concluded there was no sufficient general public interest in identifying XJA at this stage that would justify any curtailment of his and his family’s rights to respect for their private and family life.

“Identification of the claimant could, on the evidence before me, seriously affect his family life,’Justice Sharp said.

“It is material in my view, that the central information with which this action is concerned is said to be false…

“The issue of truth or falsity is yet to be determined. But it seems to me it is a factor in this case which is relevant to the seriousness of the interference with the Article 8 rights of the claimant, and to the need for an anonymity order.

“As against that, there is nothing to report about this case, apart from the bare fact that an identified claimant has obtained a privacy injunction, and the court’s consideration on the issue of anonymity, which cannot feed on itself to create a justification for identifying the claimant.

“I find therefore in all the circumstances, that disclosure of the claimant’s identity would be an unjustifiable interference with his private and family life, which outweighs the rights of the public under Article 10 and the need for open justice; and that it is necessary therefore to continue the order that the Claimant shall not be identified.

“I make the order which the parties have put before me and agreed, which includes an order that there be no report of these proceedings or the subject matter of these proceedings which is not included in this judgment.”

The case comes on the heels of a high-profile sportsman, known only as JIH, launching an appeal against a ruling which would reveal his identity.

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