Phone Hacking Claims: Paul Gascoigne, Steve Coogan and Alastair Campbell Settle With News International (Pictures)

Steve Coogan Settles With News International Over Phone Hacking Claim

Paul Gascoigne, Steve Coogan and Alastair Campbell are among claimants who have accepted damages from News International over phone hacking on Wednesday.

Hugh Tomlinson QC, who represents some of the claimants, said nine out of 10 outstanding claims had been settled with News of the World publisher News Group Newspapers.

The announcement came during the latest in a number of pre-trial reviews in the case in preparation for a long-awaited trial due to start next week.

Ex-footballer Paul Gascoigne was said to have suffered "mental harm and distress" after his phone messages were hacked by the News of the World, the High Court was told. He accepted a £68,000 payout from News of the World publisher News Group Newspapers, Mr Justice Vos was told.

Steve Coogan complained that neither "the police nor the Government" had been willing to hold hackers to account. Coogan The comedian accepted a £40,000 offer from News of the World publisher.

Both men were among a list of celebrities and politicians whose hacking damages claims have been settled, a judge heard.

Lawyers said high profile figures who had now also agreed settlements with News Group included: Liberal Democrat deputy leader Simon Hughes, politician George Galloway, sports agent Sky Andrew and Phil Hughes, who was an agent for late footballer George Best.

Today's news, at a hearing in London before Mr Justice Vos, follows last month's settlement of 37 claims against News International subsidiary NGN.

Campbell, Tony Blair's former communications director, who received "substantial damages" said the ruling was a "satisfactory outcome".

He said the case "is not, and never has been, about the money" and would be donating his damages to charity "so that at least some small good for the causes I believe in can come out of the criminality and cultural depravity of others".

"For me, this has been about people with a voice and a platform using them to change the media culture which, as I argued at the Leveson Inquiry, has become putrid in parts," he said.

Lib Dem MP Simon Hughes received £45,000 while former Labour and Respect MP George Galloway was awarded £25,000.

Sally King, a friend of former home secretary David Blunkett, received £60,000 and her husband Andrew received £50,000.



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