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Legal action launched over murdered schoolboy pic

Legal action has begun against national newspapers and picture agencies which used an exclusive front page Grimsby Telegraph photo of murdered Luke Walmsley, who was stabbed to death at school.

The Telegraph has consulted lawyers and sent letters to the Leeds-based Ross-Parry Picture Agency and six national newspapers which carried the dead 14-year-old’s photo.

Deputy editor Nigel Lowther said it had been scanned from the Telegraph’s front page by the agency, which had since apologised on the phone to editor Michelle Lalor.

He asked the Press Association to put out a note to warn the picture was copyright of Northcliffe Newspapers and the Telegraph, stating the picture had been distributed without permission. It asked interested parties to contact the paper for permission to publish.

The Telegraph printed one extra edition at 2pm on Tuesday, with a 1,500 print run after news that a serious incident – an alleged stabbing – had happened at the school.

A second extra edition of 3,000 was produced once the facts were known – and the picture of the boy was taken from the Telegraph’s own archives to illustrate it.

Nigel said: “When it came through that he had died we put his name through our archive and there were two pictures there taken by our own photographers.

“We took a little bit of a flier by running it but we were as certain as we could be after having the identity confirmed by two very good sources at the scene.

“We will be pursuing the legal action vigorously: it’s not as though these were submitted pictures – they were taken by our own photographers.”

The nationals which ran the photo were The Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, the Daily Mirror, The Sun, the Independent and the Daily Express.

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