(File image) Rupert Murdoch

London - Rupert Murdoch's British tabloid publisher News Group Newspapers (NGN) has agreed to pay damages to 22 more victims of phone-hacking, London's High Court heard on Friday.

The 22 claimants include television and radio presenter Jamie Theakston; Lisa Brash, a former girlfriend of singer Robbie Williams; and Eimear Cook, the ex-wife of golfer Colin Montgomerie.

“There will remain a substantial number of claims going forward,” lawyer Hugh Tomlinson told the court.

Media baron Murdoch was forced to close down the 168-year-old News of the World tabloid in July 2011 in the wake of allegations that its staff accessed the voicemail messages of a murdered schoolgirl and dozens of public figures.

NGN has already paid compensation to dozens of people, including with actors Jude Law and Sienna Miller, footballer Ashley Cole and former deputy prime minister John Prescott.

The court is due to sit again on Monday to consider the publisher's attempt to strike out the claim brought by Mary-Ellen Field, former adviser to model Elle Macpherson, on the basis that her messages were not intercepted. - Sapa-AFP