Prince Harry will become the first British royal to testify in court in 130 years when he attends the trial on Monday in the case against a group of newspapers. The Duke of Sussex and more than 100 celebrities are accusing the Mirror Group (MGN) of illegal journalistic behaviour.
Harry, the youngest son of Charles III, will sit on the witness stand at London’s High Court, in the course of the process involving, last month, the Rich Group, publisher of titles such as The Daily MirrorAnd Sunday Mirror that it Sunday people.
It will be the first time that a senior member of the British royal family – although the duke no longer has royal duties since 2020 – has testified since Edward VII testified as a witness in the divorce proceedings. in 1870. Twenty years later, in a suit for libel over a game of cards, the sovereign himself is back in court, although both cases occurred before he became king.
The Duke of Sussex, who is fifth in line to the throne, has made British headlines almost daily over the past six months, not only because of his legal disputes with the British press, but mainly as a result of the publication of the memoirs. And in the shade, and the Netflix documentary series, in which other royals are accused of collusion with the tabloids. His court appearance is expected to attract the same media attention.
David Yelland is a senior communications consultant and former editor at the tabloid sun By Rupert Murdoch – a publication Harry is also suing – he noted that the royal family has long sought to avoid legal action, as they have no control over this type of situation. “These issues are often a mutually destructive situation. Nobody will do well. “
they More than 100 people to sue MGN, but Harry and three others were chosen to testify.
At the trial, which began May 10, MGN journalists or the private investigators they hired are accused of carrying out a wiretap on an “industrial scale” and committing other illegal acts to obtain information on Prince and the other plaintiffs.
David Sherborne, the plaintiffs’ attorney, pleaded that the wrongdoing had occurred with the knowledge and consent of the editors and senior executives. MGN disputes the allegations and guarantees that all eminent personalities deny knowledge of any act of computer hacking. They declare that all irregularities were hidden from the heads.
“The Final Interview”
In court, a journalist and Harry biographer said one of the executives with knowledge of computer hacking was former editor Piers Morgan, now one of Britain’s most prominent presenters and an outspoken critic of the prince and his wife, Meghan.
Morgan, who has denied any involvement in illegal behavior and has accused Harry himself of violating his family’s privacy, quit hosting the morning TV show after making comments about Meghan.
It’s hard not to fall into the temptation to think that uses the courtsBecause he knows that when he sits on the witness stand, people will believe him,” says David Yeland. It’s the final interview for a hostile attorney on the witness stand. “
At the start of the trial, MGN, now owned by Reach, apologized in court documents and admitted, on one occasion, that Sunday people He illegally obtained information about Harry and that the Prince is entitled to compensation.
However, they have dismissed all other allegations, saying they have no evidence for Harry’s claims. Instead, Buckingham Palace is likely to figure prominently in the interrogations, with MGN arguing that some of the information came from royal advisors.
MGN documents claim that one of the stories about Harry emerged after the former deputy private secretary to then-Prince Charles and Piers Morgan exchanged “regular meals and drinks.”
Harry himself has accused the family and their associates of complicity in leaking negative information to protect or enhance the reputation of senior members. Buckingham Palace has not responded to this accusation.
Monday marks the second time this year that Harry has appeared before London’s High Court, after joining singer Elton John and others in March for hearings over the case against the tabloid publisher. Daily that it Sunday Mail.
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