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You're reading: In royal photo scandal, some see Murdoch message

The Sun newspaper's decision to run photographs of a naked Prince Harry cavorting in his Las Vegas hotel room defied the royal family and prompted a flood of complaints, but some say the nude photos also had a message from proprietor Rupert Murdoch to Britain's establishment: I can still shake things up.

The top-selling tabloid framed the decision as a defense of press freedom, but some observers see it as a warning shot fired by Murdoch against British officialdom, which has largely turned its back on the Australian mogul’s scandal-tainted media empire.

The Independent on Sunday carried a front page story alleging that Murdoch personally ordered the paper to run the photos.

News International, the British newspaper unit of Murdoch’s News Corp., has declined to comment.

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