In a significant court appearance on Tuesday, Prince Harry swore an oath to tell the truth as he testified against a tabloid publisher he accuses of engaging in phone hacking and other illicit snooping activities.
Clutching a Bible in one hand, Prince Harry entered the witness box at London’s High Court. Where he is currently suing the publisher of the Daily Mirror. Arriving in a black SUV, he walked past a swarm of photographers and TV cameras before entering the modern wing of the court.
The Duke of Sussex alleges that the Mirror publisher employed illegal tactics on a large scale to obtain exclusive stories. During his testimony, he faced rigorous cross-examination from Andrew Green, the attorney representing Mirror Group Newspapers, who is contesting the claims.
Dressed in a dark suit and tie, Prince Harry shared with the court that he has faced hostility from the press throughout his entire life. He further accused the tabloids of playing a detrimental role in his upbringing, stating that they have had a destructive impact.
Harry, The first royal in the century to undergo a court setting
At the age of 38, Prince Harry is the first senior member of the British royal family in over a century to undergo questioning in a court setting. The last royal to do so was King Edward VII’s ancestor, who appeared as a witness in a trial related to a gambling scandal in 1891.
Taking it upon himself to hold the UK press accountable for what he perceives as relentless harassment against him and his family, Prince Harry has made it a personal mission.
In his opening statement on Monday, Prince Harry’s lawyer, David Sherborne, outlined how British newspapers had resorted to hacking and covert tactics to obtain snippets of information about the prince from his childhood, subsequently turning them into headline-grabbing exclusives.
In a written witness statement published Tuesday, Harry said he felt “as though the tabloid press thought that they owned me.”
“I genuinely feel that in every relationship that I’ve ever had – be that with friends, girlfriends, with family or with the army. There’s always been a third party involved, namely the tabloid press,” he said.