Ryan Giggs has consented to being named as the Premier League footballer behind a high-profile injunction against The Sun newspaper, the High Court heard yesterday.
Giggs brought the injunction against the paper in April last year to prevent it publishing claims of an extra-marital affair between him and Imogen Thomas, a model. But despite the injunction he was widely named, after being identified in Parliament.
The High Court in London is considering whether he can sue The Sun for alleged breach of privacy.
The Sun says Giggs' claim – made after the newspaper published an article about a relationship with Thomas in April 2011 – is "dead in the water" and should be stopped.
Hugh Tomlinson QC, for Giggs, argued today that The Sun had misused private information in the article – in which Giggs was not identified.
He said Giggs was claiming damages for the subsequent re-publication of information in other newspapers and on the internet – and argued that his claim should go to trial.
"He has suffered damage and distress by the chain of events that has been set off by the publication of the article in The Sun," Mr Tomlinson told Mr Justice Tugendhat. "We say the printing of information on the front page of a national newspaper can give rise to an action for misuse of private information."
He suggested The Sun article had "generated a media storm" and said the damages claim was about "providing effective protection" for Giggs' right to privacy – enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights.
Richard Spearman QC, for The Sun publisher, News Group Newspapers, said the article had reported Ms Thomas's relationship with a Premier League player and had not identified Giggs. "We didn't identify him. We didn't intend to identify him," said Mr Spearman. "On the damages for publication, it is dead in the water."
Mr Justice Tugendhat reserved his decision on whether the claim should proceed.