Prince Harry Testifies on Follow-up Stories by Mirror Newspapers

Prince acknowledges competitive nature of news corporations and questions unlawful information gathering

Prince Harry is facing questions regarding stories written by Mirror newspapers as follow-ups to stories in rival publications. He acknowledges that journalists were eager for royal-related content and that any element of their private lives was interesting to the public.

Prince Harry Testifies on Follow-up Stories by Mirror Newspapers
Prince Harry in court

Prince Harry states that just because a story had been previously published does not mean there weren’t attempts to develop the story further. He suggests there was a competitive nature between news corporations.

Andrew Green, the lawyer representing the Mirror Group Newspapers, questions Prince Harry about a story reporting that he was going climbing with his brother instead of attending a gala for the Queen Mother. Green argues that it is unfair to complain about such a story when it had already been published by other newspapers and was in the public domain.

Prince Harry is also asked about an article describing him having Sunday lunch in a gastro pub on Fulham Road in London. The lawyer suggests that there may have been other ways for the newspaper to know his whereabouts without resorting to unlawful information gathering.

In response, Prince Harry states that as a witness, it is not his responsibility to deconstruct the article or determine which parts were unlawfully obtained. He believes that the journalists themselves should be addressing those questions.

Examining the article about Prince Harry’s Sunday lunch in the Fulham Road pub, it is noted that the Daily Mirror’s 3am celebrity gossip column from September 2000 provides details of two lunch dates, one involving seven blondes and two male friends. The newspaper claims that a photographer was tipped off about the pub visit and followed up on it. Prince Harry expresses uncertainty about how anyone could have known about his presence at that particular pub at that specific time in order to take photographs. He finds such coincidences peculiar. Prince Harry further states in his witness statement that he now understands that the journalists involved in this litigation, including those with bylines and the ‘3am desk,’ have a reputation for being associated with phone hacking and other forms of unlawful information gathering. He questions how the defendant’s journalists could have been aware of private conversations between him and his bodyguard.

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