Prince Harry tells hacking trial he ‘knows’ about Omid Scobie – who wrote his unofficial biography – as the duke is questioned about sources for royal stories
- The Duke of Sussex is suing Mirror Group Newspapers for damages in the High Court
- Harry was questioned in court today about Finding Freedom writer Omid Scobie
Prince Harry told his Supreme Court hacking case today that he “knows” journalist Omid Scobie, who wrote his unofficial biography and posted photos from a trip to California, where the duke and his family live.
The Duke of Sussex is suing Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) for damages, claiming that journalists – including the Daily and Sunday Mirror and Sunday People – have used methods including phone hacking, so-called ‘blagging’ or obtaining information by through deceit. and private investigators for illegal activities.
On the second day of Harry’s testimony – making him the first senior royal to testify in court in over a century – he was asked about Mr. Scobie.
Mr Scobie co-authored the 2020 book Finding Freedom about Harry and his wife Meghan, and is believed to be close to the Sussexes. However, it is unknown if he visited the couple, who live in a £12 million mansion in Montecito.
At the Supreme Court today, Mr. Scobie – who is the royal editor-in-chief of Bazaar.com – was named by MGN’s attorney Andrew Green KC in his cross-examination of Harry.
The Duke of Sussex arrives today at the High Court in London to testify further
Omid Scobie posted this photo of him in California on his Instagram account two days ago
Mr Green quoted how Mr Scobie has previously spoken about the importance of sources in royal reporting.
The lawyer then asked Harry, “Do you know Mr. Omid Scobie?”
The Duke replied, “Yes.”
Harry then clarified, “I know about him.”
Although Mr. Green did not identify the source of Mr. Scobie’s comments, an article in the i newspaper in August 2020, he quoted him as saying, “Royal and celebrity news thrives on the anonymity of sources.”
Mr. Scobie and Finding Freedom co-author Carolyn Durand spoke to more than 100 sources, including “close friends of Harry and Meghan, royal aides and palace staff (past and present)” for their book, according to a note in it.
Mr Scobie is said to have been in California and posted photos from a trip there on his Instagram account two days ago.
The journalist previously claimed he was taught how to hack voicemails during his work experience at MGN, titled The Sunday People.
Mr Scobie also previously said that during his work experience at its sister newspaper the Daily Mirror, he learned that then-editor Piers Morgan was told that information for a story about pop star Kylie Minogue had come through the voicemail.
A drawing of Prince Harry by a court artist is being cross-examined today by Andrew Green KC
Mr Scobie is seen before the Supreme Court on May 15, where he testified in the case
Mr Scobie also stressed that he is not the Sussexes’ ‘friend, mouthpiece, cheerleader’, as he testified for Harry in the Supreme Court last month.
Mr Morgan, editor of the tabloid between 1995 and 2004, has denied any involvement in phone hacking.
A profile in the Sunday Times claimed last month that Mr. Scobie had met Meghan in 2015 at Toronto Fashion Week, before she started dating Harry.
It also said he gave Meghan “a big goodbye hug” under the “malachite candlesticks” of the 1844 Room at Buckingham Palace after her latest engagement as a working royal.