A French court has announced it will rule tomorrow afternoon on whether gossip magazine Closer violated Kate Middleton’s right to privacy by publishing photographs of her sunbathing topless at the private chateau of Lord Linley. The pictures were reportedly taken by a professional photographer with an extremely good camera more than half of a mile away. The publication has argued the future Queen had no expectation of privacy considering she was outside, but the Royal Family vehemently disagrees considering how secluded the location was.

Lawyers for Kate and her husband Prince William have asked the court to impose a fine of $6500 for damage done thus far, $13,100 per day the photographs continue to be disseminated on Closer’s watch and $131,000 if the publication sells the photo rights. It has since been revealed that a private agency owns the pictures in question. The Royal Family could go ahead and sue the agency itself or all third parties who decide to publish the pictures, but no announcement has been made as to what course might be taken.

Once upon a time, a lawsuit such as this could have actually halted the spread of the pictures. With the implementation of the Internet, that’s not possible, but if the outlet is hit hard enough in the wallet, it may well dissuade others from publishing such content in the future. That’s the real goal, but we won’t know whether it has a chance of working until tomorrow at noon.

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