Paparazzi Cleared of Breaching French Privacy Laws

January 2004


Members of the paparazzi who took pictures of Diana, Princess of Wales and her companion Dodi Fayad before and after the fatal crash in Paris in 1997 have been acquitted of breaching French privacy laws. Whilst precedent had held that the inside of a car could be a private place under France’s strict privacy laws, the court held that the crashed vehicle on a public road was a public place and that the Princess and Mr Fayed had known they would be photographed when leaving the Ritz Hotel before the car crash and therefore had submitted to the invasion of privacy. If they had been found guilty, the photographers could have faced imprisonment of up to one year and fines.

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