Prince Harry’s lawsuit dealt a major blow ahead of UK tabloid trial

Prince Harry to go to trial against UK tabloid. Source: Getty

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, is scheduled to face yet another day in court after London’s High Court approved his lawsuit against media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s tabloid news.

However, the Duke’s central arguments which focus on Buckingham Palace allegedly planting stories to the tabloid newspapers and the illegal hacking of his mobile phone have been deemed inadmissible in court.

Harry alleged that newspaper publisher The Sun, then News of the World had hacked his phone and used deceptive and unlawful means to gather information on him from two decades ago.

The Murdoch News Group Newspapers (NGN) allegedly countered the claim, stating the lawsuit should be thrown out for being filed too late, falling outside the six-year time limit for legal action.

According to Justice Timothy Fancourt, if Harry had known about the phone hacking scandal years ago, he could have brought up the case sooner.

“There is no evidence currently before me that the duke knew before the (deadline to file a suit) that NGN had done anything other than hack his mobile phone at the News of the World,” Fancourt wrote in a statement.

“Knowing or being on notice of a worthwhile claim for voicemail interception does not of itself amount to knowledge or notice of a worthwhile claim for other forms of UIG.”

Fancourt also claimed Harry failed to provide any credible witnesses or documents to support his claims of the alleged deal the Palace has with the tabloid publisher.

Harry’s lawsuit is a rare and historic one with the Prince recently becoming the first British Royal to enter the witness box in over a century since Prince Albert Edward.

The 38-year-old first appeared in London’s High Court in early June to give testimony in his legal case against the publishers, marking the beginning of a series of pending legal cases.

In court documents, the Duke described his relationship with the press as “uneasy” and claimed the British press’ “vicious, persistent attacks” on his wife, which allegedly include racist articles, are the reason why the couple stepped down from their royal roles and fled to the US.

It is understood Harry, who quit his role as a working royal alongside his wife Meghan Markle back in 2020, is allegedly pursuing the legal cases against the wishes of his father, King Charles III.

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