Prince Harry Involved in Case Against Publisher Mirror Group Newspapers

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Prince Harry, the younger son of King Charles III, is currently involved in a legal case against publisher Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN). Along with over 100 other individuals, the 38-year-old prince alleges that tabloid reporters from popular U.K.

publications such as the Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror, and The People engaged in illegal methods, including hacking voicemails of family and friends, to obtain information for stories between 1991 and 2011. While MGN has previously admitted to printing stories based on phone hacking, they have denied hacking Harry’s phone.

Harry’s case is one of the four test cases, and if he and the other claimants are successful, the judge will determine the level of damages MGN would be required to pay.

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Harry, who stepped down as a senior member of the royal family in 2020 and relocated to the United States with his wife Meghan Markle, states that the alleged phone hacking severely impacted his relationship with his brother, Prince William.

One of the articles Harry claims contained unlawful information revolved around a private dispute between him and William regarding the late Princess Diana’s former butler, Paul Burrell, who frequently spoke to the press about her personal life. Harry stated that such articles sowed distrust between him and his brother, as their private exchanges were turned into tabloid fodder. He highlighted a quote in the story referring to Burrell as a “two-faced s***,” acknowledging that he believed he had used those exact words in his communication with William.

In his statement, Harry emphasized that he and his brother, with whom he now has a strained relationship, would naturally discuss personal aspects of their lives and trust each other with the private information they shared. He mentioned frequent phone conversations and voicemails containing sensitive and private details about their personal relationships, education, careers, and social arrangements. Harry also revealed that he became aware that William was also a victim of phone hacking and unlawful information gathering, although William settled his hacking case out of court.

Harry’s attorney argued that the tabloids were responsible for sowing discord between the two brothers.

The prince further claimed that phone hacking played a significant role in his breakup with his former girlfriend, Chelsy Davy. Harry and Davy dated from 2004 to 2010, with the majority of their relationship being long-distance and reliant on phone communication. Harry expressed bewilderment over how private aspects of their life together ended up in tabloids, leading to a reduction in their circle of friends. He admitted experiencing bouts of depression and paranoia, stating that the tabloids made 13 payments to investigators to dig up stories about Davy. Ultimately, these factors led Davy to decide that royal life was not for her, which greatly upset Harry at the time.

Harry’s attorney highlighted that the never-ending coverage of Harry and Davy’s relationship meant that they were never truly alone.

Another topic addressed by Harry was the infamous Nazi costume incident. The tabloid’s attorney denied hacking Harry’s phone for a story regarding a fight between him and Davy on the night he wore the controversial uniform to a party when he was 20 years old. The article claimed that Davy was unhappy about the costume choice. While Harry believed his phone must have been hacked to obtain such information, the tabloid’s attorney claimed that Davy’s uncle was the source of the story. Harry questioned the truthfulness of the article’s author regarding the source.

Harry also revealed that Diana, Princess of Wales, believed her phone was being hacked. Since initiating his case against the tabloid, Harry learned that eight private investigator payments were made in relation to his mother. He expressed feeling physically sick upon discovering this information. Furthermore, his legal team uncovered evidence indicating that his mother was indeed hacked during her communication with TV personality Michael Barrymore, one of her friends. Harry mentioned Diana’s letters detailing her concern over leaked details of their private meetings, which she had not disclosed to anyone. He assumed that voicemail interception or other unlawful information gathering methods, such as tapping landlines, were responsible for obtaining this information.

Additionally, Harry recalled an article about his mother’s visit to his school on his 12th birthday, mentioning that details such as her crying and looking stressed would not have been known to anyone else. He stated that his recollection was that his mother would quickly enter and exit the school, making it impossible for anyone to observe her emotions.

Harry accused Piers Morgan, the former editor of the Daily Mirror, of launching “horrific personal attacks” on him. He expressed disgust at the thought of Morgan and his journalists eavesdropping on his mother’s private and sensitive messages, which he believed contributed to her difficult time before her death. Harry also mentioned the ongoing personal attacks and intimidation he and Meghan Markle have faced from Morgan, emphasizing his determination to hold Morgan accountable for his unlawful activities towards both him and his mother.

Furthermore, Harry questioned the tabloids for perpetuating rumors surrounding the paternity of James Hewitt, suggesting that Hewitt, not Prince Charles, was his father. He described how these stories, which circulated when he was 18 years old and still mourning his mother’s death, deeply affected him. The presence of anonymous “highly-placed royal sources” quoted in these articles led him to question whether the newspapers intended to cast doubt on his position within the royal family. The rumors also resulted in offers for his DNA to determine the truth.

Harry also discussed how his personal medical conditions became news headlines, citing an instance where his diagnosis of glandular fever (mononucleosis) made national news. The public disclosure of his illness, which carried a stigma during his teenage years, made him question how anyone outside his immediate family knew about it, leading to a sense of distrust towards his own doctors.

During his college years at Eton, Harry feared expulsion after press reports falsely claimed that he was using drugs. The impact of these claims, highlighted by a headline from News of the World, had serious consequences for his life, as Eton had a zero-tolerance drugs policy.

Harry further recounted an article labeling him a “beach bum” during his gap year in Australia. He expressed confusion over how the press discovered his private location, suggesting the possibility of unlawful means being used.

Reflecting on his experiences, Harry realized in hindsight that his voicemails were likely hacked. He recalled instances of not receiving messages until later, discovering voicemails that were not new, and people inquiring about messages he hadn’t listened to yet. These incidents suggested that someone else had intercepted his voicemails before he had a chance to hear them.

The violation of his privacy left Harry with deep trust issues. He acknowledged that while some stories about him contained elements of truth, they were often mixed with misinformation obtained through phone hacking or unlawful information gathering. This distorted public perception of him and his life, creating a sense of paranoia within his relationships. As a young person, he experienced difficulties trusting others, which he described as an awful feeling.

Harry revealed that evidence disclosed by MGN in the case demonstrated that their newspapers made 289 payments to private investigators for information related to him and his inner circle. He discovered that his phone number was listed in the contact list of Nick Buckley, a “prolific hacker and head of news at the Sunday Mirror.” These findings reaffirmed Harry’s previous concerns about being

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