Court increase damages for Briton Irvine

LONDON: Former Formula One driver Eddie Irvine won increased damages on Tuesday for the use of a “doctored” photograph of him on a 1999 advertising leaflet for a radio station. 

Northern Irishman Irvine, who was awarded £2,000 (US$3,160) last year by the High Court after he successfully sued commercial radio station TalkSPORT for damages over the leaflet, had the award increased to £25,000 (US$39,510) by the Court of Appeal. 

Wireless Group, which owns the radio station, said in a statement that TalkSPORT would also have to pay all the legal costs of up to £250,000. 

The original photograph showed Irvine dressed in his racing gear and holding a mobile phone to his ear, but on the cover of the leaflet, the phone had been replaced with a radio bearing the logo of Talk Radio, the station’s name at the time. 

“To my eye, the image on the front of the leaflet is the clearest representation that Mr Irvine has endorsed Talk Radio,” said Lord Justice Jonathan Parker. 

The court ruled the station would have had to pay £25,000 to lawfully use the picture of Irvine. 

At the time of the leaflet Irvine was at the height of his career with Ferrari and finished second in the drivers' world championships. He is not competing in Formula One this year after losing his drive with Jaguar. – Reuters 

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