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Mosley fights for tougher privacy laws

ESPNF1 Staff
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Max Mosley talks to reporters outside the High Court after winning his legal action against the News of the World in 2008 © Getty Images
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Former FIA president Max Mosley is back in court, this time seeking to impose more Draconian restrictions on the rights of the media via the European Court of Human Rights.

Mosley's actions follow embarrassing revelations of his private life in the News of the World in 2007. Mosley took the newspaper to court and won damages of £600,000 after the High Court in London ruled his privacy had been violated.

Mosley will argue privacy laws in the United Kingdom should be tightened so editors are forced to notify so-called celebrities in advance of stories they intend to publish. This would allow those concerned to seek injunctions to prevent publication rather than seek redress retrospectively through the courts.

Mosley will argue that damages does not undo the harm revelations cause to the individual's reputation. "As things stand, the law is ineffective," he told the Guardian. "It cannot prevent even the most outrageously illegal invasions of privacy by the tabloids. If they feel like it, they can ruin lives with impunity. The only answer is to compel a newspaper to inform you if it intends to publish your private information."

At the heart of the case are Articles 8 and 10 of the Human Rights Act which protect the right to privacy and that to freedom of expression. The case is being contested by a number of media organisations, who argue that the change would harm the right to freedom of expression.

A ruling is not expected for several months.