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Last Updated: Sunday, 21 December, 2003, 14:47 GMT
A-list libel lawyer dies
Laurence Olivier
Sir Laurence Olivier was on Mr Carter-Ruck's list of celebrity clients
Leading libel lawyer Peter Carter-Ruck has died aged 89.

His daughter, Julie Scott-Bayfield, said her father had died in his sleep on Friday at his home in Great Hallingbury, Essex, after a short illness.

Mr Carter-Ruck was renowned for his legal battles with the satirical magazine Private Eye and various national newspapers on behalf of celebrities.

His A-list clients included Laurence Olivier, Spike Milligan, Harold Wilson, Cary Grant, Lucian Freud, and Cecil Parkinson.

Stansted campaign

He set up Peter Carter-Ruck and Partners in 1982 and retired to Great Hallingbury 1996, though he remained a partner.

In recent years Mr Carter-Ruck had devoted much of his time to the campaign to stop the expansion of nearby Stansted Airport.

The Government announced last week that it was backing plans for a new runway at airport by 2011 or 2012.

Andrew Stephenson, senior partner at Carter-Ruck, paid tribute to him as a man of "great charm" with a dry sense of humour who was devoted to his family and his work.

"He always set the highest standards in terms of the service he gave to clients.

"It really was an outstanding example of how to conduct litigation."

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