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No one who has admitted phone hacking has said Prince Harry was among victims, says Mirror Group

Dec 14, 2023

My colleague, media editor Jim Waterson, has written up this take on today's hearing, focusing on claims that under Piers Morgan's leadership, Daily Mirror reporters allegedly hacked the phone of Diana, Princess of Wales.

He writes:

The high court heard that Diana had regularly talked to Barrymore in the months before her death, at a time when they were two of the most famous people in Britain. The television presenter was "struggling with coming out as gay", as well as dealing with an addiction to alcohol and drugs.

On Monday, a phone-hacking trial heard extracts from a letter in which Diana offered to support Barrymore, who was one of the nation's leading television stars. In one letter, sent in early 1997, the princess provided her phone number and wrote: "Dear Michael. What joy it was to finally meet you tonight. I did want to emphasise that I’m here for you – whenever.

"It's very easy to pop round and see you or please telephone now you have my number. You’re doing just fine and believe me, I know. So take great care and lots of love from Diana."

Months later, Diana wrote again to say she was "devastated" that details of their supposedly secret meetings had been obtained by the Daily Mirror. She apologised to Barrymore for the leak, expressed her disgust with the tabloid press, and said she did not know how the news had come out, given "nobody knew about our conversations". The court heard that Barrymore did not reply to this letter, highlighting the "isolation" caused by press intrusion.

David Sherborne, the barrister who is acting for Diana's younger son, Prince Harry, in the trial against Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN), said the simple explanation was that journalists working for the Daily Mirror had hacked Diana's voicemails.

The lawyer also suggested the Daily Mirror's then editor, Piers Morgan, was disingenuous when he later wrote in his autobiography that he had "heard rumours" about a friendship between Diana and Barrymore.

Read the full article here: