Prince Harry has dropped his libel claim against the publisher of the Mail on Sunday, according to the paper’s sister title, the Daily Mail.
The Duke of Sussex had sued Associated Newspapers Limited over an article published in the Mail on Sunday relating to his security arrangements in the UK following he and wife Meghan Markle’s move to LA. His lawyers, Schillings, claimed the article unfairly alleged he had tried to mislead the public.
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Associated Newspapers declined to comment today, but the Daily Mail reported Harry’s legal team had filed notice of discontinuance hours before they were due to pass over a list of documents, which could have featured in the eventual trial.
Harry’s legal team had claimed the article suggested he had “contradicted public statements he had previously made about his willingness to pay for police protection for himself and his family whilst in the UK” — something he claims is untrue.
We’ve reached out to Harry’s team for comment.
According to the Daily Mail, Harry now faces having to Associated Newspapers’ legal costs of around £250,000 ($316,000), which is on top of his own legal costs. He was ordered to pay $62,000 to the publisher in December after part of the claim was thrown out of court.
Had the case gone to trial, or a settlement not reached, the libel trial would have held between May and July next year.
Harry, who is married to Suits actress Markle, is among a group of high-profile individuals, including Sir Elton John, Sadie Frost and Liz Hurley, who have separately brought legal action against Associated Newspapers.
The group has accused the publisher of multiple “gross breaches of privacy” such as hiring private investigators to place listening devices inside cars, listening into phone calls, and dishonestly obtaining medical and financial information.
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