Sienna Miller Settles 'News of the World' Phone Hacking Case
LONDON - Actress Sienna Miller has become the first person to agree an out-of-court settlement with Rupert Murdoch's News of The World newspaper, accepting £100,000 in compensation for having her phone messages illegally accessed.
The paper has unconditionally accepted liability for multiple breaches of privacy, and will also meet Miller's considerable legal costs.
The payout is likely to be the first of many after legal cases have been brought by a number celebrities, public figures, politicians and sports stars whose phones had been illegally hacked by the newspaper.
A number of legal cases are still proceeding, although the paper has said it wishes to settle out of court.
"Several weeks ago we admitted liability in certain cases and offered a genuine and unreserved apology. We hope to resolve other cases swiftly," News Group Newspapers said in a statement.
Celebrity PR agent Max Clifford, who settled out of court two years ago with the News of The World after his own phone was hacked, said the settlement was less than the star had expected, but would provide a benchmark for other claimants.
"It's a quarter of what Sienna was actually hoping to get, but what it really has done is put a marker down for everybody else. There are about eight other cases being worked out [through the courts] at the moment and an awful lot of other people who are watching with interest and their lawyers are thinking of taking on the News of The World."
Clifford told BBC News that other cases were likely to surface beyond those cases in court and that many more newspapers could be drawn into the scandal.
"Potentially you could be talking about a lot of other people. My own view is that this was widespread and not just at the NOW," he said.
"You're talking about dozens of people and potentially a lot more than that. I know just in recent months I've had half a dozen people approach me who thought their phones had been hacked and only one of them was claiming this was done by News International."