Sir Elton John made an unexpected appearance Monday at London’s High Court as the hearing for the lawsuit he and several others brought against a British tabloid began.
Elton was spotted with his husband, David Furnish, heading into the court around lunchtime. Neither of them are expected to testify.
As previously reported, in October the singer, Prince Harry and other high-profile individuals filed suit against Associated Newspapers — publishers of the U.K. papers Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday and the Mail Online — under accusations of breach of privacy and “numerous unlawful acts,” such as alleged phone tapping.
The suit claims Associated Newspapers unlawfully obtained their private and sensitive information, such as their banking and credit histories.
The suit claims the company hired private investigators to secretly place surveillance equipment in their cars and homes to eavesdrop on and record their private conversations without their knowledge. The suit states the publisher “even commission[ed] the breaking and entry into private property.”
Elton and company also claim the publisher hacked their mobile phone messages, bribed police to hand over their sensitive data and had their employees impersonate officials to obtain their private medical information.
The suit alleges this activity ran from 1993 to 2011, but a lawyer suggested some cases continued beyond 2018.
Elton and his group claim there are more victims of these alleged crimes. While it’s unknown what damages they are seeking, they stated in a press release they aim to hold those who allegedly wronged them accountable and dissuade journalists from engaging in similar tactics.
Associated Newspapers has denied the accusations and is seeking to throw out the case.
This is the first day of the suit’s preliminary hearing, which is expected to span four days.
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