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The Duke of Sussex, 38, unexpectedly appeared at the High Court as legal proceedings begin on his claim against the Daily Mail publisher Associated Newspapers, over allegations of unlawful information-gathering. Piers Morgan, 57, couldn’t help but comment on Prince Harry’s attendance on Twitter, slamming him for his claim after “invading his family’s privacy”.
Harry, singer Sir Elton John and actresses Sadie Frost and Liz Hurley are among the individuals who allege unlawful information gathering.
The publisher itself has described the allegations as “preposterous smears”.
As Harry made the unexpected court arrival, Piers spoke out within minutes to share his opinion on the case in view of his 8.4 million followers.
He blasted: “BREAKING: Prince Harry, who’s spent the past few years ruthlessly invading the privacy of his family, friends and acquaintances, for huge financial gain, has turned up at court in London to complain about newspapers invading his privacy.”
Many social media users were quick to share their views on Piers’ prompt response, with plenty siding with the TalkTV presenter.
RichJacobs quipped: “Maybe Sasha Walpole would like to have a word with Harry about the invasion of her privacy?”
Piers replied bluntly: “One rule for him, another for all the people whose privacy HE invaded.”
Jameson1981 said: “It’s funny how he and Meghan left the royal family for a more private life yet he’s in the public eye more than ever.”
MetinaMM added: “Oh, him again? They’re having the time of their life getting the attention they lacked when they were kids and growing up.
“Hence for never stopping. Relentless and insatiable! If this were to visit his father, negotiation would have been like pulling teeth. Re-entry visa to US ok?”
However, many social media users backed Harry for standing up for himself against the UK publication.
Jamesalandixon said: “So newspapers should be allowed to get away with it then? It’s entirely possible to be in the right and also hypocritical, you know.”
Shahnaz16904 added: “I agree with Harry. He stands up for his rights! Well done, Harry and Megan!”
MaggieRawlings commented: “You forgot to mention that these newspapers might actually be breaking the law ..”
Harry, Elton and his husband David Furnish were on the list to bring the claim against Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL) in October for misuse of private information.
Their lawyers said at that time the group had “become aware of compelling and highly distressing evidence that they have been the victims of abhorrent criminal activity and gross breaches of privacy” by ANL, which is also the publisher of The Mail On Sunday and MailOnline.
In a statement announcing the launch of the legal action, released by Hamlins law firm, it was alleged the unlawful acts included hiring private investigators to secretly place listening devices inside cars and homes and recording private phone conversations.
The list also included “the payment of police officials, the impersonation of individuals to obtain medical information, as well as accessing bank accounts”.
In a statement released at the time, the newspaper group responded: “We utterly and unambiguously refute these preposterous smears which appear to be nothing more than a pre-planned and orchestrated attempt to drag the Mail titles into the phone hacking scandal concerning articles up to 30 years old.
“These unsubstantiated and highly defamatory claims – based on no credible evidence – appear to be simply a fishing expedition by claimants and their lawyers, some of whom have already pursued cases elsewhere.”
A four-day preliminary hearing at the Royal Courts of Justice in London began today, which is set to include ANL’s bid for the claims to be dismissed without a trial.
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