Sienna Miller says Sun forced her to make decisions about pregnancy

Actor, who believes reporter illegally obtained medical records, speaks after accepting settlement

Sienna Miller has said the Sun forced her to make decisions “about my own body that I have to live with every single day” after the newspaper found out she was in the early stages of pregnancy.

The actor said the then Sun editor Rebekah Brooks, now the chief executive of Rupert Murdoch’s News UK business, phoned her agent in 2005 to discuss the pregnancy before the actor had had the opportunity to discuss it with close friends and family.

Miller, who ultimately did not have the baby, believes a Sun reporter illegally obtained her private medical information from a “blagger” and said Brooks “knew about my pregnancy in the most vulnerable moment of my life”.

Speaking outside the high court, Miller added: “It is a part of my case that [Brooks] assured those that represent me that she would not print that information. And it is part of my case that she, the Sun, did print that information.”

The actor was speaking after accepting a substantial settlement from Murdoch’s company News Group Newspapers. That meant her claims of illegal activity at the Sun will not go to a full trial, which could have ruled on their veracity. The settlement was made on the basis that there was no admission of illegal activity or phone hacking at the Sun. Brooks was separately found not guilty of phone hacking at a criminal trial in 2014.

Miller said she had been desperate to take the Sun to trial, but – because News Group had made her a substantial financial offer to settle the case – she could have faced a multimillion-pound legal bill if she had chosen to do so. “It was not my choice to be standing here; I wanted to go to trial. I wanted to expose the criminality that runs through the heart of this corporation. A criminality demonstrated clearly and irrevocably by the evidence which I have seen. I wanted to share News Group’s secrets just as they have shared mine.

“Unfortunately, that legal recourse is not available to me or to anyone who does not have countless millions of pounds to spend on the pursuit of justice. Such is our world. Until someone comes along who can confront the Murdochs’ endless means, all that I have left are these words. And they are the truth.”

Miller’s settlement statement in court made a series of claims about the behaviour of Nick Parker, who remains a senior Sun journalist, based on documents obtained during the legal discovery process.

Miller believes her private medical records were obtained by Parker through a blagger named Christine Hart, who issued an invoice to Parker for “Sienns [sic] Miller Pregnant research”. Parker’s personal expenses also used references such as “SIENNA MILLER PREGNANCY RIDDLE” and “DINNER WITH TRACER (WHO CONFIRMED SIENNA WAS PREGNANT)”.

Miller also repeated her belief that her friends and family were subject to “the prolonged, substantial and targeted voicemail interception and unlawful information-gathering activities carried out by journalists at the Sun”.

News Group has always maintained that while phone hacking was rife at the News of the World during the 2000s, no illegal activity took place at its sister newspaper during the era when Brooks was editor of the daily tabloid.

Despite this, the company has repeatedly paid large sums to people who have made allegations of illegality at the Sun. These include Paul Gascoigne, who this week settled a claim against the Sun alongside Miller. The former England footballer said the Sun’s reporting of personal medical information had a “devastating and debilitating impact on my mental health and wellbeing”.

Speculation is now turning to Prince Harry’s ongoing phone-hacking case against the publisher of the Sun and whether he would be willing to potentially risk a major legal bill to force the case to trial.

Outside court, Sienna Miller said she would happily give evidence in any future trial: “In these proceedings, I learned first hand the extents to which that newspaper and this corporation will go to protect those at the top from being exposed and facing the consequences of their actions.

“They very nearly ruined my life. I have certainly seen how they have ruined the lives of others. Their behaviour shattered me, damaged my reputation at times beyond repair, and caused me to accuse my family and friends of selling information that catapulted me into a state of intense paranoia and fear.

“I stand here in fellowship with the untold lives that have been destroyed by the Sun and News International.”


Jim Waterson Media editor

The GuardianTramp

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