Pictures were published by French magazine

After topless pictures of Kate Middleton were published by a French glossy magazine the photographer and publisher responsible are set to face a criminal trial.

Kate, 31, was on holiday with Prince William, 30, at a private retreat in Provence, France in September when the snaps were taking of her sunbathing.

The photos were published in French Closer and the royal couple decided to take legal action against those involved.

The photographer and the magazine’s publisher are set to face a criminal charge for a ‘grotesque breach of privacy’.

The couple’s lawyer Aurelien Hamelle says Kate and Wills felt ‘violated’ by the intrusion into a ‘highly intimate moment during a scene of married life’ and stressed that the Duchess was ‘a young woman, not an object’.

The photographer reportedly took pictures of Wills reading an iPad as Kate sunbathed in a bikini and their lawyer argues that they could not have known they were being spied on.

St James’s Palace told the Mail Online that the investigation was a matter for the French authorities.

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Anna Francis