Skinny Guardian

7 December 2020, 18:57 (UTC), 385 words. Caroline Davies.

Prince Harry launches libel action against Mail on Sunday publisher

The Duke of Sussex has launched a libel action against Associated Newspapers, publisher of the Mail on Sunday, the same newspaper against which his wife, the Duchess of Sussex, is pursuing separate legal action.

Documents were lodged with the high court by the couple’s legal team, Schillings, on 27 November.

Further details are expected to be made public in coming weeks. The claim is said to relate to a story published by the Sunday newspaper in October, which alleged that Prince Harry had failed to maintain contact with the Royal Marines after he formally stepped down from royal duties in March, the Telegraph reported.

After stepping back from his role as a senior royal in January for a new life in the US, Harry gave up his honorary military titles. His ceremonial roles as Captain General of the Royal Marines, Honorary Air Force Commandant of the Royal Air Force base Honington in Suffolk, and Honorary Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Naval Commands’ Small Ships and Diving, were all put on hold.

Meghan is embroiled in legal action against the Mail on Sunday for breach of privacy after the newspaper published extracts of a letter she sent to her estranged father, Thomas Markle. The duchess is seeking damages for alleged misuse of private information, copyright infringement and breach of the Data Protection Act.

The trial, which had been scheduled for January in the high court in London, will now be heard in autumn 2021 after Meghan successfully applied for an adjournment for confidential reasons, which have not been made public.

Harry is also suing the Sun and the Daily Mirror over alleged phone hacking, claiming that his voicemails had been intercepted.

In July it emerged that the couple were suing paparazzi for invasion of privacy in a case in California after drones were allegedly used to take photographs of their son, Archie, at their Los Angeles home. Meghan is also suing a picture agency over photographs published of her walking her dogs with Archie in woods in Vancouver in January.

The duke spent a decade in the forces and carried out two frontline tours to Afghanistan. Earlier this month he spoke publicly of how he was “born into a life of duty” but that, during his time in the military, he “committed to a life of service”.