The royal couple of Britain Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, filed a lawsuit in California on Thursday.
According to several media reports, the couple has stopped the sale and publication of a photo of their son Archie that they say was shot at their Los Angeles-area home in an invasion of their privacy.
What did the lawsuit state?
This action arises out of the relentless and quite frankly shocking efforts of the tabloid media to profit from serial intrusions of the privacy of a 14-month-old child in his own home and the desire and responsibility of any parent to do what is necessary to protect their children from this manufactured feeding frenzy. Toddler Archie has not been in public, much less in Malibu, since the family arrived here.
The couple has not learned the identity of the shooters and sellers of the photos, who are listed as John Does in the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court. The plaintiffs are listed as Harry, The Duke of Sussex and Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex. The lawsuit further seeks to identify the defendants, and for the court to issue injunctions requiring them to turn over all photos of Archie and cease harassing the family.
It is illegal in California to take photos of individuals "engaging in a private, personal, or familial activity, through the use of any device, regardless of whether there is a physical trespass." The law covering the invasion of privacy also includes the "capture any type of visual image, sound recording, or other physical impressions of a person engaging in a private, personal, or familial activity and the invasion occurs in a manner that is offensive to a reasonable person.
The family was forced to erect a large mesh fence to block photographers with telephoto lenses from shooting pictures of them from a ridge hundreds of yards away from the home of a friend in a gated community where they have been living.
Meghan sues a pair of media outlets for invasion of privacy & copyright infringement
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. The paparazzi have been waking their neighbours and their son day after day "as early as 5:30 a.m. and as late as 7:00 p.m".
Since Harry and Meghan don't know the identity of the paparazzi who took the photos, their lawsuit is filed against "unnamed parties, so-called 'John Does.
By this action, the plaintiffs seek the right to take discovery 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.
In the complaint, Harry and Meghan said that they have done everything to stay out of the limelight except when it's their work, which they admit is newsworthy.
The couple chose to live at least part-time in North America "to escape the incessant UK tabloid fabrications.
Meghan is also suing a pair of media outlets there for the invasion of privacy and copyright infringement.
For the unversed, Harry, grandson of Queen Elizabeth II and sixth in line to the British throne, married Meghan Markle, an American actress who grew up in Los Angeles, at Windsor Castle in 2018, in a posh ceremony watched around the world.
In January, the couple announced they planned to quit as senior royals, seek financial independence and move to North America. The split became official at the end of March.
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