Meghan Markle is being accused of ‘collaborating’ with the authors of the book ‘Finding Freedom’ about her life with the Duke of Sussex, the final hearing of her High Court action against the publisher of the Mail on Sunday will be heard today.
Meghan is suing Associated Newspapers (ANL) for publishing a ‘personal and confidential’ handwritten letter sent to her estranged father Thomas Markle, 76, in August 2018, months after he had a heart attack and couldn’t get her down the aisle walk.
The Duchess, 39, insists the note contained her ‘deepest and most personal thoughts and feelings’ and that its publication was an abuse of her private information and in violation of the Data Protection Act.
Meghan Markle ‘collaborated’ with the authors of the book ‘Finding Freedom’, the final hearing of her High Court action against the publisher of The Mail on Sunday will be heard today
ANL lawyers say Meghan colluded with writers Omid Scobie (left) and Carolyn Durand (right)
Meghan has started legal proceedings against the British press after her father Thomas (pictured together when she was a teenager) shared a letter she sent him after the royal wedding
At the last preliminary hearing in London on Monday, ANL asked for permission to adapt its written defense to Meghan’s claim to claim that she ‘collaborated with the authors of the recently published book’ Finding Freedom ‘to publish their version of certain events” .
ANL attorneys say her cooperation on the book reflects the way her five friends informed People Magazine with her consent about the letter to her father.
Meghan denies helping with the book
Meghan’s attorneys have denied working with authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand on the book, which was published in August, saying that any reference to her letter in the book simply “ extracts from the letter’s own articles. defendant ‘. ‘.
In written submissions, Justin Rushbrooke QC said, “The plaintiff and her husband did not collaborate with the authors on the book, nor were they interviewed for it, nor did they provide photographs to the authors of the book.”
He added that neither Meghan nor Harry spoke to Mr. Scobie or Ms. Durand, who he said “did not get the impression that the plaintiff wanted the contents of the letter to be included in the book.”
Mr Rushbrooke will reportedly represent Meghan for the rest of the case after she drops his colleague, David Sherborne.
Antony White QC, representing ANL, said in written comments that Finding Freedom “ gave every appearance to be written with their (Meghan and Harry’s) extensive cooperation. ”
He argued that ANL should now be allowed to file an amendment to her defense because the book with her approval contains descriptions of her ‘relationship and communication with her father’, and that Meghan ‘either allowed or allowed information was provided directly or indirectly to and collaborated with the authors of (Finding Freedom), including by providing or permitting them with information about the letter ‘.
Famed attorney David Sherborne (pictured left) represents Meghan at the Supreme Court hearing last week, but Judge Mr Justice Warby (right) did not find him in favor
ANL insists that the Duchess has also allowed this and other private information to come into the public domain by collaborating with the authors or by giving her friends the green light to share details about her personal life.
A document submitted to the court identifying Meghan as’ C ‘(plaintiff) states:’ If C cooperated extensively with the authors and allowed a detailed account of her private life, relationships, thoughts and feelings to be published, including references to her relationship and communication with her father, it is difficult to see how she can complain that the Letter should not have been published because “it contained the plaintiff’s deepest and most personal thoughts and feelings.”
Thomas Markle with a baby Meghan Markle. A photo shown in the Channel 5 documentary called Thomas Markle: My Story, which aired earlier this year
Thomas Markle displays souvenirs he keeps on Harry and Meghan’s mantelpiece from the wedding that he was unable to attend. Father and daughter have not spoken since then
Referring to the ‘Book’, it adds: ‘The Book describes in detail C’s feelings about a variety of personal matters, relationships and events, and attributes to her several quotations about her feelings (36 according to D’s account).
“It also provides a detailed account of events where it can reasonably be concluded that only C and her husband, and / or possibly a third party who would not have spoken to the authors (e.g., the queen), were present.”
Meghan’s lawyers also allege that ANL’s re-changed defense would also significantly delay the start of the full trial, scheduled for January next year.
A document submitted to the court claimed, “The plaintiff and her husband have not collaborated with, nor were they interviewed for, the authors of the Book, nor provided photographs to the authors of the Book.
Neither the plaintiff nor her husband spoke to the authors’ or purposes of the Book. ‘
Details of a statement by co-author, Mr. Scobie, were also included in the document filed by ANL, where lawyers from the media group insisted they wanted to “ test ” his evidence in cross-examination.
They claim that Mr. Scobie appears to confirm in his statement that people “ who worked on behalf of C (Meghan) were working with the authors and gave them the names of people close to C who would help and that the authors spoke to such people and receive information from them. ‘
Master Francesca Kaye at the Supreme Court will also rule on cost budgets for the case, which has also confused the two sides.
Meghan claims costs of an estimated £ 1.4 million, which ANL has disputed as too high.
Last month, Meghan won the most recent battle in the legal process after Mr Justice Warby ruled in her favor to protect the identities of five friends who gave an anonymous interview to People magazine.
The senior judge said he had concluded that Meghan should receive a warrant protecting the identities of the individuals “ for now, ” after an attempt by ANL to name them.