Brits probe naked Harry photographs

Prince Harry

LONDON — St James’s Palace has confirmed it contacted the Press Complaints Commission over the possible use of naked photos of Prince Harry.

The palace had heard a number of UK newspapers were considering using them, a spokesman said. Not one has done so.

It believed publication of the photos – taken in a Las Vegas hotel room – would constitute an invasion of privacy.

One ex-editor said the decision not to use the photos showed the Leveson Inquiry had “neutered” UK newspapers.

The inquiry, which is looking at press standards and the relationship between journalists and those in power, was launched last year in the wake of the phone-hacking scandal that led to the closure of the News of the World.

Prince Harry, 27, is believed to be back in the UK after pictures of him and a young woman naked in a Las Vegas hotel room appeared on US gossip website TMZ.

St. James’s Palace has confirmed the prince is in the photos and that it contacted the PCC yesterday because it had concerns about his privacy being intruded upon, in breach of the editors’ code of practice.

The photos are believed to have been taken on a camera phone last Friday when the prince was on a private weekend break with friends.

TMZ reported that Harry had been pictured in a group playing “strip billiards”.

The pictures have been picked up by much of the US media but no British newspaper has published them, although they have appeared on a political blog in the UK and the Sun mocked up an image of one of them on its front page.

Former News of the World executive editor Neil Wallis told the BBC that before the Leveson Inquiry he would have published the pictures because it was in the public interest, but the inquiry had “neutered” the press. (Reuters)

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