Prince Harry back in court to give evidence in phone hacking case

By Christian Edwards, Jessie Gretener and Lindsay Isaac, CNN

Updated 2236 GMT (0636 HKT) June 7, 2023
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7:19 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Harry claims photograph of him and ex Chelsy was "security issue"

Proceedings have resumed after a short break

Harry claims that an exclusive photograph in the Sunday Mirror of the duke dropping off ex-girlfriend Chelsy Davy on the grounds of his former residence Kensington Palace was “suspicious” because of the location on a private road which was not normally frequented by photographers. 

The picture which was presented as "proof" as part of a report claiming the couple had reunited, claimed to prove that Davy had spent the night at the palace.

Harry linked the photo to invoices obtained by his legal team for private investigators for a file named "Chelsy watch."

“Given how little there really is to the story, it is mind boggling the amount of enquiries and payments MGN had made,” Harry alleges in his statement as part of a broader argument of the scale of press operation to gain information about him illegally.

The incident, Harry told the court, was a “security issue” given the road's location.

Harry said as “she had spent the night with me, I was dropping her off as close as I could to Kensington High Street, and to know there was a photographer there waiting.”

6:54 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Prince claims “Hooray Harry dumped” headline was “hurtful”

Green pressed Harry on his objections to a Sunday Mirror article published in November 2007, detailing the breakdown of his relationship with Chelsy Davy.

“Along with the photograph, the article reports my arrival time, how I entered the club and who else was with me,” the prince wrote in his witness statement.

“I did go to this particular nightclub, Amika in Mayfair, on a few occasions, but as I have said previously, my movements were never intended to be public knowledge. They were intentionally kept confidential for security reasons, so how did they know?” he added.

Green asked Harry whether he was aware that various other papers had reported on his nights out in this particular London nightclub.

The judge also asked Harry whether he often went to this nightclub.

“It was somewhere that I went occasionally but not regularly,” the prince said, adding “I wouldn’t say I was there once a month.”

The prince also claimed that he found the headline – “Hooray Harry dumped” – to be “hurtful.”

He said he had been upset “that such a painful moment was turned into a laugh.”

Green asked the prince if he was suggesting that the headline was celebrating that he had been dumped.

“If you look at the article, it said that she [Davy] had got tired of your ‘hooray’ lifestyle,” Green said.

6:54 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Report about fight between Harry and Charles over ex "suspicious," Harry claims

From CNN's Lindsay Isaac

Britain's Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy laugh before the game between South Africa and England at the Investec Challenge international rugby match at Twickenham, London on November 22, 2008.
Britain's Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy laugh before the game between South Africa and England at the Investec Challenge international rugby match at Twickenham, London on November 22, 2008. Chris Ratcliffe/AFP/Getty Images

Prince Harry believes that a "royal exclusive" in the tabloid the People, detailing a “highly private” argument between the duke and his father King Charles over his relationship with then girlfriend Chelsy Davy, is the “kind of article just perpetuated feelings of distrust, within all of my relationships.” 

Due to the private nature of the call with Charles in which the duke was reported to have “slammed the phone down” and the fact that the duke says he never discussed his relationship,” Harry asserts that the "source" named in the article was “suspicious.”

In his witness statement Harry alleges that the article included a quote from a senior aide that described him being “incandescent” when Charles described his and Davy’s relationship as “puppy love” that he had “exploded,” and was banned from seeing Davy in Cape Town by his father.

Harry insisted to the court that “ he never spoke to anyone in the palace about the relationship between me and my girlfriend."

“This shows me that MGN were digging around my associates to unlawfully gather my private information. There really was no respite from the press intrusion,” Harry’s witness statement reads.

6:44 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Sherborne intervenes in cross-examination, calls Green’s line of questioning “inappropriate”

Court artist sketch of the Duke of Sussex (right) being cross examined by Andrew Green KC, as he gives evidence at the Rolls Buildings in central London during the phone hacking trial against Mirror Group Newspapers on June 7.
Court artist sketch of the Duke of Sussex (right) being cross examined by Andrew Green KC, as he gives evidence at the Rolls Buildings in central London during the phone hacking trial against Mirror Group Newspapers on June 7. Elizabeth Cook/Press Association/AP

Harry’s lawyer, David Sherborne, made a rare intervention during Green’s cross-examination of the prince.

Green was questioning Harry about a 2006 article published in the People, detailing an argument the prince had in a nightclub with then-girlfriend Chelsy Davy.

“The article reports that Chelsy had ‘let rip in a string of phone calls’ and includes a comment from a ‘highly placed source’ that she had gone ‘berserk,’ had slammed the phone down because she was too angry, and then called back to scream at me for half an hour,” according to the prince’s witness statement.

Harry claimed that the “detail about the timing and length of the calls is so specific,” that it made him suspicious. 

He told the court that, because his “girlfriend’s number was bizarrely in the hands of Mirror journalists,” he believed the journalist who wrote the piece likely “got hold of her call data” and used it to make a story.

“You assume that having got hold of her number, they then managed to get hold of her phone records?” Green asked.

The prince agreed. When asked to provide evidence, Harry claimed that he thought “most of the evidence has been destroyed.”

In his written evidence, the prince cited three payments made to various contributors to the story, which he claimed to find “particularly suspicious.”

Green suggested that a more likely version of events is that “a payment has been made to a freelance journalist” who may have attended the nightclub, rather than hacking the prince’s or Davy’s phone.

“One of those payments, I accept, is probably to a person who works at the club,” Harry said.

Sherborne intervened, claiming that Green’s line of questioning was “inappropriate.”

The prince’s lawyer claimed that when Green suggests that “what has happened is X, it’s putting a case that there is no basis for.”

“Mr Sherborne’s right in principle, you can’t invite Prince Harry in advance to agree that something has happened,” the judge responded.
6:29 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

"No one would want to be phone hacked," Harry tells court

From CNN's Lindsay Isaac

MGN lawyer Andrew Green pressed Prince Harry on the specifics of his phone hacking allegations, saying there is “not a single item of call data at any time” between Harry’s phone and any Mirror Group journalist. 

“If the court were to find no evidence of phone hacking, would you be relieved or disappointed?” Green challenged the duke.

“That would be speculating – I am not sure if I would be relieved or disappointed, ”Harry responded.

The duke told the court he believes undoubtedly that phone hacking was at an “industrial scale” across “at least three papers,” so he added that it would be an “injustice” if his claim was not successful. 

“So you want to have been phone hacked?” Green asked.

"No one would want to be phone hacked," the duke replied.
6:24 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

A change in approach from Prince Harry

From CNN's Jessie Gretener at the High Court in London

Prince Harry began his time in the witness box on Wednesday with a more deflective approach, in comparison to a mostly measured manner on Tuesday.

Sitting under the bright lights of the modern and simple court room, the prince, although still softly spoken, had a firmer tone when responding to questions. Within the first 30 minutes, he told Green on several occasions to ask his legal team rather than answer directly to the line of questioning. 

Green's maintained his clinical and repetitive line of questioning for each archive news article

One of Green's tactics is to question when the prince first read each of the 33 articles being interrogated.

On several occasions on Tuesday, Prince Harry said he could not recall every article he had read, rather arguing that the distress caused was from all articles.

Prince Harry again continued that argument on Wednesday, adding that reading those articles were "more distressing than going through this process."

Green's cross-examination of Prince Harry is expected to last several more hours, with the prince's lawyer allocated a day and a half for his line of questioning. The back and forth between the pair is picking up pace as the day progresses.

6:07 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Harry asked what constitutes “public interest” to him

Officer Cadets parade into the Old College building following the 200th Sovereign's Parade at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) in Camberley, England, on April 14
Officer Cadets parade into the Old College building following the 200th Sovereign's Parade at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) in Camberley, England, on April 14 Andrew Matthews/PA Images/Getty Images

In his witness statement, Harry objected to an article published in May 2005 in the People newspaper, which reported that the prince had delayed his entry to the Royal Military College at Sandhurst due to a knee injury.

The newspaper suggested the prince was receiving favorable treatment.

“The article reports that I was being let off daily marches at Sandhurst due to a longstanding injury to my knee, and included quotes from ‘insiders’ at Sandhurst about the injury and treatment,” Harry wrote in his witness statement. 

The prince alleged that Dean Rousewell, the journalist who wrote the piece, “is well-known in this litigation as having used unlawful information gathering techniques himself, and also a habitual commissioner of private investigators.”

Andrew Green, however, pointed the prince to statements he had made months prior to the article being published, detailing his knee injury and the potential effect it would have on his entry to Sandhurst.

In one such statement cited by Green, Harry had claimed he wanted to ensure he was “100%” before starting at the military academy. The statement “gave detailed information about the condition of your knee… including an MRI scan,” Green said.

“The knee injury had been widely reported in the press, hadn’t it?” Green asked Harry.

The prince agreed.

Harry was also asked what he thought would constitute a “public interest story” about him.

“What would be a public interest story about you that would be legitimate in publishing?” Green asked.

Harry suggested “a life-threatening injury” might be a legitimate cause of public interest.

5:27 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Prince Harry arrives in courtroom

The Duke of Sussex has entered court 15 of London’s High Court and proceedings are set to get underway.

Barrister Andrew Green, representing Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN), will resume his cross-examination of the prince.

5:04 a.m. ET, June 7, 2023

Members of the press and public take seats in courtroom ahead of Prince Harry's cross-examination

Journalists are filing into Court 15 at the Rolls Building of London's High Court for day two of Prince Harry's witness testimony.

Due to the high interest in the case, an additional overflow room as been set up for press members unable to get a seat in the courtroom where the prince is giving evidence.

Press are also lining the streets in front of the court, with television crews from around the world set up to get a glimpse of Prince Harry.

Members of the public also have the chance to get a seat in the courtroom, with people lining up since the early hours of the morning.

Many of those here are the same people who attended yesterday, a mix of budding lawyers, Prince Harry fans, and law enthusiasts.