Meghan Markle’s Father Could Testify Against Her in Mail on Sunday Lawsuit

FILE – In this Tuesday, July 10, 2018 file photo Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, and Meghan the Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry watch a flypast of Royal Air Force aircraft pass over Buckingham Palace in London. As part of a surprise announcement distancing themselves from the British royal family, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan declared they will “work to become financially independent” _ a move that has not been clearly spelled out and could be fraught with obstacles. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, File)

Thomas Markle could be called to give evidence at the high court against his estranged daughter Meghan, as part of her ongoing legal action against the Mail on Sunday, after it emerged that the paper’s defence appears to rely on his account.

The Duchess of Sussex is suing the newspaper for breach of copyright, invasion of privacy, and misuse of personal data after it published excerpts from a letter she sent her father complaining about how he was treating her.

The Mail on Sunday filed its defence at the high court on Tuesday, arguing that the duchess and other royals “rely on publicity about themselves and their lives to maintain the privileged positions they hold” and that she could not “have a reasonable expectation of privacy that the contents of the letter were private and would remain so”.

They said there is a “huge and legitimate public interest” in the private lives of the royals and would defend the case, which comes as the royal family struggles with the question of how to disentangle Prince Harry and his wife from public life.

Among the evidence disclosed in the court papers are highly personal text messages between Thomas Markle and his daughter in the run-up to her wedding in May 2018.

The Mail on Sunday’s defence dismissed the copyright claim by arguing the letter was not an original literary work, while suggesting that Meghan allowed her friends to brief the American celebrity magazine People on her behalf in February 2019. Among the claims made by People was that the Duchess had sent her father a “loving” letter six months earlier.

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SOURCE: The Guardian, Jim Waterson