British Royals Sue Silvio Berlusconi Magazine Over Topless Photos

Buckingham Palace - H 2012
Getty Images

Buckingham Palace - H 2012

They say photos of a topless Kate Middleton on vacation, which had appeared in the French version of Closer, were a privacy breach.

LONDON -- Britain's royals are suing French magazine Closer, which had on Friday published photos of a topless Kate Middleton on vacation.

A spokeswoman in the royals' press department late Friday confirmed that that Middleton and husband Prince William have launched legal action.

The French magazine is owned by Italian media mogul and former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi's holding company Fininvest.

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"St James' Palace confirms that legal proceedings for breach of privacy have been commenced today in France by The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge against the publishers of Closer Magazine France," the royals said in a statement that referred to Prince William and Middleton by the titles they are known under here.

The photo scandal is the second such scare for the royals within a few weeks. TMZ recently published grainy cell phone pictures of a naked Prince Harry online and Rupert Murdoch's The Sun followed suit here a couple of days later.

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In that case though, the royals didn't launch any legal action.

News of the Middleton photos had led to an uproar in the British media early on Friday. The British version of Closer, owned by a different company, said mid-day that it wouldn't run the photos.

Twitter: @georgszalai