Entertainment & Arts

Winslet's husband is 'not a public figure', says court

Image caption Kate Winslet and Ned RocknRoll married in a private ceremony in New York in December 2012

A judge has given his reasons for preventing a tabloid newspaper from publishing photographs of Kate Winslet's husband Ned RocknRoll.

The "innocent but embarrassing" semi-naked pictures of business tycoon Richard Branson's nephew were taken at a fancy dress party two years ago.

The written judgement follows a two-day hearing earlier this month.

Mr Justice Briggs said Mr RockNRoll's brief notoriety was not enough to place him in the public sphere.

Mr RocknRoll, who was born Edward Abel Smith, had "briefly become something of a public figure", but was not a public figure in his own right.

The High Court judge had previously ruled in favour of Mr RocknRoll's claim that there was no public interest in The Sun publisher, News Group Newspapers, printing the photographs and that it would breach privacy.

This came after Desmond Browne, the QC presenting the tabloid, claimed the pictures' publication would have been justified because Mr RocknRoll had "propelled himself into the position of public figure".

The photographs were taken at a private 21st birthday party and posted on Facebook.

Image caption Ned RocknRoll arrives at court on the first day of his hearing

A joint statement from the couple before the hearing said: "The photos are innocent but embarrassing and there is no reason to splash them across a newspaper."

"We recognise that in the internet age privacy is harder and harder to maintain," they continued. "But we will continue to do what we can, particularly to protect Kate's children from the results of media intrusion."

Winslet has been married twice before Mr RockNRoll, to film directors Jim Threapleton and Sam Mendes.

More on this story