Two-day appeal hearing to decide whether £1.2m Mirror hacking payout to six victims is too much

The appeal by Mirror Group Newspapers against the record damages awarded to eight claimants in the phone-hacking case is to be heard on October 20 and 21.

The Inforrm blog reported that the appeal – which Lord Justice Justice Kitchin, who gave permission for it to go ahead, saying it should be treated with a "reasonable degree of expedition" – had been listed "extremely quickly".

MGN, publisher of the Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror, and Sunday People, is appealing against Mr Justice Mann's decision in May to award a total of £1.2 million in damages to eight victims of phone-hacking.

Actress and businesswoman Sadie Frost received the largest sum – £260,250 – while former England footballer Paul Gascoigne (pictured) was awarded £188,250.

Other payments were £85,000 to TV executive Alan Yentob, £117,500 and GBP157,250 respectively to actresses Shobna Gulati and Lucy Taggart, £155,000 to soap star Shane Richie.

TV producer Robert Ashworth, who was married to actress Tracy Shaw, received £201,250, and flight attendant Lauren Alcorn, who had a relationship with soccer star Rio Ferdinand, was awarded £72,500.

Lord Justice Kitchin gave MGN permission to appeal on four grounds:

  • that the damages awarded were disproportionate compared to the scale of damages for personal injuries
  • that they were disproportionate in comparison to awards for privacy breaches made by the made by the European Court of Human Rights
  • that Mr Justice Mann erred because there was double counting in his assessment of damages
  • and that he erred by awarding damages for distress or injury to feelings and for the fact of the wrongdoing, although the latter factor should not have been taken into account.

Trinity Mirror has said that MGN, its subsidiary, has accepted that it should pay appropriate compensation.

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