Singer Cliff Richard's case against BBC begins in High Court

British singer Cliff Richard arrives at the Rolls Building in London, where a High Court judge is preparing to analyse evidence in a legal battle between singer Cliff Richard and the BBC, Thursday April 12, 2018. The 77-year old singer Richard denies any wrongdoing and was never charged with any offence, and is suing the BBC over coverage of a police raid at his apartment in Sunningdale, England, in August 2014. (Yui Mok/PA via AP)
Head of News-gathering at the BBC, Jonathan Munro arrives at the Rolls Building in London, where a High Court judge is preparing to analyse evidence in a legal battle between singer Cliff Richard and the BBC, Thursday April 12, 2018. The 77-year-old singer Richard denies any wrongdoing and was never charged with any offence, and is suing the BBC over coverage of a police raid at his apartment in Sunningdale, England, in August 2014. (Yui Mok/PA via AP)

LONDON — Longtime British rock icon Cliff Richard's case against the BBC's coverage of a police raid at his home has begun in a London court.

Richard is suing the broadcaster for its coverage of the 2014 raid, when police were investigating an alleged sex assault.

The 77-year-old singer was never charged with any crime. His lawsuit claims he suffered "profound" damage to his reputation as a result of the BBC's coverage of the police activity at his home.

BBC says it will "vigorously" rebut Richard's case.

Richard's lawyer Justin Rushbrooke told the court BBC used its cameras to "spy" into Richard's home.

He said it was hard to describe "the sense of panic and powerlessness" Richard experienced when he realized the BBC was broadcasting images of the raid based on allegations he knew were false.

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