The Duke of Sussex testified against Mirror Group Newspapers for alleged unlawful information gathering between 1996 and 2010
Prince Harry's historic testimony against Mirror Group Newspapers was documented with courtroom sketches.
While cameras are banned from the Royal Courts of Justice in London, court artist Elizabeth Cook gave a glimpse inside with sketches of the Duke of Sussex on Tuesday and Wednesday. The drawings show Prince Harry, 38, giving evidence from the witness stand on Tuesday while his attorney David Sherborne and judge Mr. Justice Fancourt listen as well as MGN lawyer Andrew Green cross-examining the prince. The artist created similar sketches on Wednesday during Harry’s second day in court.
Although Prince Harry appeared more assertive during the second day of cross-examination on Wednesday, confidently answering Green's questions, he seemed emotional at the end of his testimony. He hung his head and slumped slightly in his chair as Sherborne followed up with his client on some questions.
But when Prince Harry walked out of the courthouse, he gave a smile and thumbs up.
The Duke of Sussex kicked off his testimony when he appeared in court on Tuesday. Prince Harry first filed a lawsuit against MGN in 2019, alleging that his phone voicemails were hacked using unlawful information gathering. The powerhouse publisher of the Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror, Daily Express and more denies the allegations.
The Duke of Sussex argued that about 140 articles published from 1996 to 2010 contain information obtained via unlawful methods, the BBC reported. Thirty-three of the stories are being considered in court.
On Wednesday, Green continued cross-examining Harry on some of these specific stories. Many of the articles discussed on day two involve his relationship with his former girlfriend Chelsy Davy, who he dated on and off from 2004 to 2011.
An article from 2006 stated that Prince Harry visited a strip club, reportedly upsetting Davy.
"My girlfriend’s number was bizarrely in the hands of Mirror journalists," Prince Harry said. "Very suspicious that they had her number […] I don't believe she would give any journalist her number."
He also spoke about an article reporting on a "make-or-break holiday" in Mozambique with his then-girlfriend.
Harry said he was "deeply concerned that would be published in advance" of the vacation. "Another classic example of a story 'incentivizing' reporters to go and find out as much as possible," he added.
Regarding a 2009 article about Prince Harry alleging trying to win Davy back after a breakup, the Duke of Sussex was asked if he was aware that people close to Davy were talking about her to the media. Harry replied that he doubted that was happening.
When asked about a transcript of one of Davy's friends speaking to the media, Prince Harry said he would "question the validity of this." Harry claims that it was taken from "a false e-mail to hide the true nature of how [MGN] got the information."
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On Tuesday, the Duke of Sussex underwent almost five hours of questioning by Green on the witness stand.
Prince Harry said that "every single article has caused me distress," claiming that the behavior of people around him changed due to the contents of the articles.
He added that tabloids have "blood on their hands" for the pain they've caused.
King Charles’ younger son made history when he took the stand against the newspaper group on Tuesday as the first prominent member of the British royal family to give evidence in court in 130 years. The last royal to do so was King Edward VII, who testified as a witness in a divorce case in 1870 and again in a slander trial over a card game in 1890 before becoming monarch.
At the end of Tuesday's court appearance, Prince Harry hinted that he will FaceTime with his wife, Meghan Markle, and their children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet, at home in California. When the judge told the Duke of Sussex not to discuss his evidence with anyone overnight, he replied by asking if that included his wife and children, noting he would be likely connecting with them on a video call.
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