Sunday, April 21, 2024

Prince Harry ready to take witness stand

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London – “Any one of the thousands of people that I met or was introduced to on any given day could easily have said: ‘You know what, you’re an idiot. I’ve read all the stories about you and now I hate you and am going to stab you’,” said Prince Harry, in a witness statement for a court case that once again threatens to rewrite what we know about the Royal Family.

His statement, in a pre-trial hearing last week about phone hacking, is a remarkably frank self-portrait that veers from being angry, outraged and obsessive to often apparently being in a state of flight or fight.

Prince Harry believed his battles with the tabloid press put him at risk from a public that had been turned against him, depicting him, in his own words, as a “thicko”, “cheat”, “underage drinker” and “irresponsible drug taker”.

We also learned that this isn’t going to go away – with Prince Harry ready to break the taboo about a royal in the witness box, by making it clear that he will give evidence in person in court, if not in this case then with others being brought against other newspaper groups.

It’s becoming increasingly clear that he has the money and the resolve to go toe-to-toe with the newspapers. And his opponents in this case – News Group Newspapers – have equally made clear that they reject his accusations and that he should have brought these claims years ago and they are out of time.

Harry’s language, not the usual dry stuff of legal documents, illustrates his readiness to go the distance. He doesn’t just oppose the other side in this case, he labels their behaviour “utterly vile”, “disgusting, immoral and a complete abuse of power” and says they had a “devastating impact” on his mental health.

And it’s understood that his statement is a “toned down” version of the original. (BBC)

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