David Walliams 'upset' and 'angered' by phone hacking

<p>Little Britain star and author David Walliams previously described Winton as ‘the best company, always outrageous and hilarious’. (PA) </p>
David Walliams (PA)

David Walliams was “upset" and "angered" when he learned that journalists has intercepted his voicemails, the High Court has heard.

The Britain’s Got Talent judge, 49, was among several stars to formally settle damages claims over phone hacking against a newspaper publisher on Thursday.

He received “substantial compensation” and a public apology after bringing legal action against Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN), publisher of The Mirror, Sunday Mirror and The People.

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During the hearing, the court heard how Walliams suffered “distress and embarrassment” over the intrusion and that it had a big impact on both his work and personal life, damaging some relationships.

The TV star and comedian had alleged he was targeted by MGN between 2003 and 2010, and that his friends and colleagues were also targeted to obtain private information, with 45 articles published as a result of intercepted voicemails or other unlawful techniques.

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David Walliams arriving at the Charles Finch and Chanel pre-Bafta party at 5 Hertford Street in Mayfair, London.
David Walliams (PA)

Roddy Chisholm Batten, representing Walliams, said: “Mr Walliams is also upset and angered by the lengths to which MGN went in order to invade his private life.

“He suffered distress and embarrassment as a result of the misuse of his private information.

"By intercepting his voicemails, MGN would have been privy to messages of a highly personal nature.

Photo by: zz/KGC-81/STAR MAX/IPx 2020 9/3/20 David Walliams is seen arriving at Scott's Seafood Restaurant in Mayfair, London, England, UK.
David Walliams (zz/KGC-81/STAR MAX/IPx 2020)

“Many articles identified by Mr Walliams were highly intrusive and were published at a time of intense media intrusion into his life."

“This had a very significant impact on both his personal life and his professional life," he went on.

"Many relationships were damaged or destroyed as a result of MGN’s conduct and this is a source of huge regret to Mr Walliams.”

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Last October both sides agreed to settle Walliams’ claim, with MGN admitting liability, paying substantial compensation and paying his reasonable legal costs. The newspaper publisher also apologised privately to the actor.

Martin Clunes attending the ITV Gala at the London Palladium. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday November 24, 2016. See PA story SHOWBIZ Gala. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire (Photo by Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images)
Martin Clunes (Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images)

Other stars settling claims on Thursday included Martin Clunes, Roxanne Pallett, Antony Cotton, Mark and Samantha Womack, Caroline Quentin and her husband Sam Farmer.

Additional reporting by PA.

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