The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are said to be ‘saddened’ today after learning that a French magazine is publishing topless photographs of Kate on holiday in France.
The news broke as the royal couple enjoyed breakfast during a tour of Malaysia. A source said the reaction by the Duke and Duchess to the images appearing was ‘anger and disbelief.’ It’s believed the couple, who are currently in Kuala Lumpur, have not seen the actual photographs although it’s thought they have seen the pixelated pictures on the website.
Closer magazine in France said the ‘exclusive’ pictures showed Kate Middleton sunbathing topless on the terrace of a private villa last week. The couple were staying at a chateau owned by Lord Linley, the Queen’s nephew.
When the pictures initially on the French website, the image showed a heavily pixelated the Duchess in a bikini apparently about to remove her top was pixelated. However the pictures in the magazine, are not pixelated.
St James's Palace declined to comment, but speaking before the magazine hit the newsstands, royal officials told Associated Press that if the photos were genuine and were published, it would be like "turning the clock back 15 years".
The intrusion, of course, comes 15 years after the Duke’s mother, Princess Diana, was killed in August 1997 when her car crashed in Paris as it was being pursued by paparazzi photographers. The fact that Palace sources have alluded to the Princess’s death showed the depth of their anger at the controversy, which threatens to overshadow the couple’s foreign tour.
Another source added: "We will talk to our lawyers in London and counterparts in Paris to see what options are available."
According to media commentator Roy Greenslade, many British publications were offered the pictures but declined to use them he told BBC Radio 4. Another source went on to say: "We're not aware of anyone (in the UK) seeking to publish so the Press Complaints Commission is not coming into it."
The couple are thought to be seeking redress via the French legal system. As the source added: ‘We are consulting with French lawyers at the moment.’
Meanwhile, Closer magazine UK this morning made it clear that the two publications are owned by different companies and make entirely independent editorial decisions. In this respect the comments made by the Editor of the French edition which have reported in the media today do not reflect the opinions of Closer magazine UK.
They said Closer magazine UK were not offered any pictures of this nature and certainly has no intention of publishing the photographs of the Duchess of Cambridge which have been published in France this morning. They reiterated that Closer magazine UK takes its obligations under the PCC Code extremely seriously and would never publish topless images of a member of the Royal family on its cover or otherwise.