Max Mosley, the boss of Formula 1 motor racing, has admitted a lifelong passion for sadomasochistic sex but denied it involved Nazi role-playing, which he described as "unerotic".
He was accused of indulging in a "sick orgy" with five prostitutes that featured them dressing up as, allegedly as concentration camp figures.
At the High Court Mr Mosley, 68, admitted the article in a tabloid newspaper had "devastated" not only his own life but that of his wife of 48 years and their sons.
They had had no knowledge of his unusual preferences until the News of the World published the results of their sting operation in March.
However, James Price QC, appearing for Mr Mosley, said he had indulged in "S & M" - meaning sadomasochistic - role play for many years.
"Bottom spanking, whip fantasy and role play scenarios are an interest he accepts he has had since quite a young age," said Mr Price.
"Most people probably think that S & M behaviour - spanking of bottoms, whips and roleplays, doctors and nurses, Sheik and harem, guards and prisoners - are permissible and private and even funny.
"The News of the World, we say, is out of touch with the instincts of decent British people."
He said that such people believe that one's private life should remain private "so long as it does not involve exploiting children or vulnerable people".
The court heard that the session took place in a rented flat in Chelsea paid for by Mr Mosley for the purpose of meeting the women, whom he paid £500 each.
Covert recording equipment captured Mr Mosley, son of 1930s Fascist leader Sir Oswald Mosley, being spanked by one of the women with a whip, as well as using a strap to spank a woman. He also talked to one of the women in German.
In the article, headlined "F1 boss has sick Nazi orgy with 5 hookers", the newspaper claimed he pretended to be both a concentration camp inmate and commandant.
But Mr Mosley told Mr Justice Eady in London that there were no Nazi connotations whatsoever.
"I can think of few things more unerotic than Nazi role play," said Mr Mosley, president of the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA).
"It also has associations for me in other ways which would make it even less interesting.
"All my life, I have had hanging over me my antecedents, my parents, and the last thing I want to do in some sexual context is be reminded of it."
The court heard that Mr Mosley was given no chance to respond to the article before its publication, which shocked his wife Jean and his two sons, two sons Alexander , 38, and Patrick, 36.
"My wife and I have been married for 48 years and together for more than 50 - and she never knew of this aspect of my life, so that headline in the newspaper was completely, totally devastating for her and there is nothing that I can say that can ever repair that.
"Also, for my two sons, I don't think there is anything worse for a son than to see in a newspaper, particularly one like the News of the World, pictures of the kind they printed.
"I can think of nothing more undignified or humiliating than that."
Mr Mosley is claiming breach of privacy and the action includes an unprecedented claim in such a case for exemplary or punitive damages as well as compensatory damages.
The News of the World contests the claim and argues that publication was justified in the public interest.
Mark Warby QC, counsel for the News of the World, argued that it had published a "legitimate and lawful story".
He said: "The activities that went on here are not deserving of respect, however much they might have been kept behind closed doors."
Mr Warby told the judge that "whipping or beating someone until he bleeds is a criminal offence" and amounted to the offence of wounding.
The case continues.
Source: University of New Hampshire
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