Actor Hugh Grant, his ex-girlfriend Liz Hurley and her new husband won thousands of dollars in damages on Thursday after paparazzi pictures taken while they were on holiday were published in tabloid newspapers.

The pictures of Grant, Hurley and her businessman husband Arun Nayar at a private resort in the Maldives, were distressing and an invasion of their privacy, London’s High Court was told.

They were taken by photographers from agencies Big Pictures (UK) Ltd and the French-based Eliot Press.

The pictures were published in the News of the World (NoW) newspaper and its rival the Mail on Sunday (MoS) last October.

The court was told the MoS article was headlined “Hugh’s that gooseberry?” while the NoW published the pictures under the banner “Liz does the blokey-cokey.”

Hurley, Grant and Nayar accepted a total of 58,000 pounds in damages for invasion of privacy and a public apology from the agencies.

Publishers Associated Newspapers and News Group Newspapers will also contribute to the settlement, the court was told.

Laura Tyler for the trio -- who were not in court -- said the articles had been distressing.

“It has been most upsetting for (them) to have their privacy invaded by these (organizations),” she told Mr Justice David Eady. The agencies had accepted the photographs should not have been taken and that their actions invaded the trio’s privacy, she added.

Grant, 47, best known for his appearance in the romantic comedy “Four Weddings and a Funeral,” split from Hurley, 42, in 2000 -- ending a 13-year relationship that survived Grant’s well-publicized encounter with a prostitute.

Hurley, a model who appeared in films such as Bedazzled and Austin Powers, married Nayar, a jet-set businessman and a friend of Bollywood film stars, in March last year. The traditional Hindu ceremony in the Indian desert state of Rajasthan followed a week of lavish wedding celebrations after their civil marriage the previous week at a castle in England.

Latest From ...