In the latest development in the ongoing News Group Newspapers (NGN) saga, the U.K. media giant and former publisher of News of the World has avoided another trial by settling their case with Welsh soprano Charlotte Church.
Church, 25, had claimed that News of the World investigators hacked into her voicemails in order to break stories about the star's personal life. In a November testimony to the Leveson Inquiry--a forum set up by U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron to investigate media ethics violations--Church described her mother's attempted suicide after News of the World published a story about her father's illicit affair.
NGN had made an offer of between £380,000 and £500,000 on Monday to convince the Churches to settle, reports The Telegraph.
So far, most of the lawsuits brought against NGN have been settled. These include claims from high-profile figures like Jude Law, Sienna Miller and Ashley Cole.
NGN came under fire in July of 2011 when an investigation by The Guardian found that News of the World, a tabloid published by NGN, had engaged in phone hacking to gain more information about the case of missing teenager Milly Dowler in 2002. The subsequent public uproar led to further investigations, and it was revealed that News of the World journalists had hacked into the voicemail systems of numerous public figures and celebrities. The newspaper shut down shortly afterwards.
There is still plenty of potential for more suits; police have identified more than 800 possible victims. Just yesterday Cherie Blair, wife of former U.K. Prime minister Tony Blair, filed her own claim against NGN relating to interception of her private voicemails.