Prince Harry accused of ‘scattergun’ approach in phone hacking court case | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker

During a preliminary hearing on Thursday, Mr Justice Fancourt was told that the proposed claims included new categories of alleged wrongdoing by NGN, including the interception of voicemail messages left on landline telephones as well as mobiles, and also listening in live to mobile phone calls.

Lawyers for NGN argued in documents submitted to the court that the Duke was making unspecified allegations dating back decades and they should be barred by the statute of limitations on such offences because he could not argue that he had only just found out about them.

The Duke, the actor Hugh Grant and more than 40 others are suing NGN and the now-defunct News Of The World, over alleged unlawful information gathering and invasion of privacy. A trial has been scheduled for January 2025.

In a written outline of NGN’s defence, barrister Anthony Hudson KC said there was no “cogent link” between the new allegations and those that the court is currently due to consider.

He said: “This scattergun approach does not meet the requirements of … tests in relation to the pleading of similar fact evidence. Nor does it conform to the requirement that a trial be restricted to the issues necessary for and proportionate to the fair determination of the dispute.”

He said it was “wholly inappropriate” for the Duke to impose new claims on the court “on the speculative basis that, among the myriad of non-specific allegations made against undefined journalists across two newspapers throughout the period of 1996 and 2011, some isolated examples might ultimately prove to be relevant to some unspecified unlawful information gathering allegations”.

David Sherborne, for the Duke, said his client wanted to extend the scope of the case to 1994, when: “The Duke of Sussex was 10, but there was information relating to his welfare, relationships and his mother, Princess Diana, and her state of mind … and right up to 2016. That’s the relevant period of dispute.”


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