By Sebina Noreen Malik
The Hight Court has held that an individual’s right to privacy has been breached by the publication of a news article containing information about him relating to an investigation.
The Claimant was a businessman and the chief executive of a UK company who had applied for an injunction to remove a news article from the defendant’s website.
The defendant had published an article about the claimant based on allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption. The claimant had a reasonable expectation of privacy as he was not a director of the company and his claim to privacy was not over his alleged involvement, but over the leaked confidential details of the investigation.
The defendant was asked to take down the confidential article but declined to remove the article that had already been published, and that was already in the public domain.
The Claimant’s Claim
- he had suffered distress as a result of the publication;
- he had not consented to the publication of his name in connection to an investigation of a company with which he was associated;
- the investigation had not been concluded and that he had not been arrested.
The claimant issued an application to stop the ongoing publication of the article before the Court and for a mandatory take-down injunction on misuse of private information.
The judge held that in this case, an injunction would have been useful, and it was likely that an interim injunction would have been granted.
The claimant could not rely upon reputational damages however, relied upon distress and embarrassment suffered as a result of the publication of the article and was awarded £25,000. (ZXC v Bloomberg LP  EWHC 970 (QB) (17 April 2019).)