Four Danish journalists and an employee of the credit card company, Nets, have been found guilty of paying for the credit card information of members of the Danish Royal Family, politicians and celebrities. All have either been sentenced to jail or put on probation.
Rivals of the Se og Hor Weekly were baffled when the magazine reported stories on celebrities and the Danish royals. IT expert, Peter Bo Henriksen, who once worked for Nets, leaked the information to the magazine. Because of his involvement, he was sentenced to eighteen months behind bars for selling information regarding the whereabouts of the Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen and actor Mads Mikkelsen from 2008 to 2012.
One story published that was leaked by Henriksen was the secret, private honeymoon of Prince Joachim and his wife, Princess Marie, which they took to Canada in 2008. The magazine bought the honeymoon itinerary from Nets. The Prime Minister also fell victim to the magazine.
A former editor for the Se og Hor, Henrik Qvortrup, was also sentenced to eighteen months in jail. Twelve of those months were converted to 200 hours of community service. Three other Se og Hor journalists were given suspended sentences, and one other journalist was acquitted. All have since left the magazine, which is one of the most popular in Denmark.
The journalists and the former credit card company employees weren’t the only people to face legal action. The media group that owns the magazine was fined $1.52m (£1.22m) last year. They ‘wrongly monitored’ 120 celebrities. Two former senior staff members were given suspended sentences.
The Danish Royal Family has yet to comment on the intrusion of their privacy. However, one celebrity unconcerned with sharing their opinion of how this case was handled, was Rene Dif of the Danish-Norwegian music group Aqua. He criticised the sentences last Thursday by telling Danish TV, “These short sentences show how ridiculous the Danish justice system is.”
Apparently, the four journalists agree, but for an entirely different reason. They are considering appealing the verdict.